Category: Club Announcements

Academy Stars named in Hoopsfix All-Star Classic Rosters

Hoopsfix has revealed the rosters for the 2020 Hoopsfix All-Star Classic, despite its cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The annual event – supported by Nike and 5or6 – would have brought together the top male and female junior players of their generation to play in three All-Star games across two days.

We are delighted to announce that four Rockets academy players – both past and present – have been named in those rosters. Join us in congratulating Asher Ndah, David Chive and Matt Marsh for being selected for the Class of 2020 roster, as well as Latrell Maitland and Sam Grant for making the underclassmen roster.

The five previous events have all sold out in advance and another capacity crowd was anticipated in Brixton for the 2020 edition, which was originally scheduled for June before its cancellation.

“Though we are absolutely gutted to have had to cancel the event this year, we felt announcing the selected players is a small gesture to show recognition of those who would have been suiting up,” said Sam Neter, owner of Hoopsfix.

“Despite the event not happening, we will class those selected this year as alumni as with every other year, and they will be listed on the new website – launching soon – with player profiles.

“Congratulations to all those selected, and massive respect to all the clubs, coaches and people who contributed to their development. We look forward to following their progress and development in the coming years.”

With countless national titles and a wealth of junior international experience between them, the rosters represent a glimpse into the future of British basketball and include both domestic and foreign-based players.

The full selections for each game are as follows with name, height, position, and their 2019-20 programme as selections were based on performances up until the end of last season.

Class of 2020 Rosters

Team Black

David Chive, 6’0”, Guard, John Madejski Academy

Chris Feeney, 6’2″, Guard, Barking Abbey

Bradley Kaboza, 6’2″, Guard, Myerscough

Charlie Brown, 6’3″, Guard, Derby

Lewis McGlasson, 6’4″, Guard, Myerscough

Asher Ndah, 6’4″, Guard, John Madejski Academy

Eljay Morris, 6’4″, Guard/Forward, Governor’s Academy (USA)

Richard Amaefule, 6’9″, Forward, Bishop Lynch (USA)

Sanmi Fajana, 6’8″, Forward, Myerscough

Amari Williams, 6’10”, Forward/Centre, Myerscough

Josh Ogundele, 6’11”, Forward/Centre, Worcester Academy (USA)

Matt Marsh, 7’0”, Forward/Centre, FC Barcelona (Spain)

Team White

Blaize Sagna, 6’2″, Guard, Charnwood

Louis Norton, 5’10”, Guard, Barking Abbey

Ben Winter, 6’3″, Guard, Ipswich

Chester Morrell, 6’2″, Guard, Canterbury

Taiga Forster, 6’1″, Guard, Itchen

Greg Durand, 6’5″, Guard, Charnwood

Vasja Pandza, 6’8”, Guard, The Hotchkiss School (USA)

Tomiwa Sulaiman, 6’6” Forward, West Nottingham Academy (USA)

Tom Sowoolu, 6’8″, Forward, Barking Abbey

Eduardo Andre, 6’10”, Forward, AZ Compass Prep School (USA)

Sam Chigbo, 6’11”, Forward/Centre, Myerscough

Theo Hughes, 7’0″, Centre, Barking Abbey

Underclassmen Rosters

Team Black

Cameron Hildreth, 6’5″, Guard, Holy Trinity

Latrell Maitland, 6’1″, Guard, John Madejski Academy

Elijah Walsh, 6’4”, Guard, Queen Ethelburga’s

Jacob Morgan, 6’0″, Guard, Ipswich

Michael Belle, 6’6″, Guard, Strasbourg (France)

Sam Alajiki, 6’7″, Guard, Beckley Prep (USA)

Flynn Boardman-Raffet, 6’4″, Guard/Forward, Barking Abbey

Blake Bowman, 6’5″, Guard/Forward, Derby Trailblazers

Franklin Agu, 6’6″, Forward, Myerscough

Sam Grant, 6’8″, Forward, John Madejski Academy

Josh Ijeh, 6’8″, Forward, BMET James Watt College

Ethan Price, 6’10”, Forward, Ipswich

Team White

Quinn Ellis, 6’3″, Guard, Orlandina (Italy)

Alex Distras, 6’0″, Guard, Haringey

Josh Uduje, 6’6″, Guard, Knox School (USA)

Owen Young, 6’4″, Guard, Haringey

Wakeem Richardson, 6’3″, Guard, BMET James Watt College

Veron Eze, 6’4″, Guard, Barking Abbey

Jeremy Sochan, 6’8″, Forward, La Lumiere (USA)

Moses Gordon, 6’6″, Forward, New City

Abiodun Adedo, 6’5″, Forward, St Charles

Giovanni Emejuru, 6’10”, Forward, Charnwood

Victor Ndoukou, 6’8″, Forward, Charnwood

Ndwedo Newbury, 6’8”, Forward, Haringey

Under-19 Women Rosters

Team Black

Ella Doherty, 5’11”, Guard, Caledonia Pride

Jade Mbam, 5’7″, Guard, Manchester Mystics

Mariam Olawoyin, 5’5″, Guard, Nottingham

Molly James, 5’9″, Guard, Charnwood

Tamara Fournillier Onadeko, 5’10”, Guard, Barking Abbey

Hannah Dawson, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Charnwood

Rebecca Dwomoh, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Femeni Maresm (Spain)

Esther Little, 6’2″, Guard/Forward, Copleston

Jannike Marshall, 6’0″, Forward, Caledonia Pride

MJ Sarkodee-Adoo, 6’2″, Forward, City of London Academy

Molly Lavin, 6’2″, Forward, Richmond Knights

Louise Rouse, 6’2″, Forward, Oaklands

Isimenme Ozzy-Momodu, 6’1″, Centre, City of London Academy

Team White

Amelia Sandie, 5’7″, Guard, City of London Academy

Abbey Whitehouse, 5’9″, Guard, Sheffield

Asha Andrews, 5’7″, Guard, Sevenoaks Suns

Charlotte Redhead, 5’7″, Guard, Copleston

Ella Pearson, 5’10”, Guard/Forward, Copleston

Simona Henshaw, 5’10”, Forward, City of London Academy

Shaniya Rose, 6’0″, Forward, Nottingham Wildcats

Susannah Rafiu, 6’1″, Forward, Copleston

Pollyanna Storie, 6’2″, Forward, Caledonia Pride

Adaobi Nebuwa, 5’10”, Forward, City of London Academy

Cameron Taylor-Willis, 6’0″, Forward, Copleston

Emma Imevbore, 6’4″, Centre, London Thunder

Alex Baker, 6’2″, Centre, Charnwood

Club Statement: COVID-19

This morning we received formal confirmation that a member of the Rockets academy programme has tested positive for COVID-19.

The health and well-being of everyone in the Rockets community is of the utmost importance. Those who have been in contact with the positive case have been notified and are now strictly following the government’s self-isolation guidelines.

We also have a wider care and responsibility to the players and staff from opposing teams. Therefore, with an abundance of caution, we have informed the NBL and Basketball England and have had to postpone our Lynch Trophy fixture with Oaklands Wolves scheduled for this Saturday.

JMA Rockets return from their Erasmus trip to Spain

22 players and 6 staff were privileged enough to spend 2 weeks in Spain recently thanks to the Erasmus plus programme. Erasmus plus is the European Union programme for education, training, youth and sport. Erasmus plus aims to modernise education, training and youth work across Europe. It is open to education, training, youth and sport organisations across all sectors of lifelong learning, including school education, further and higher education, adult education and the youth sector.

The group set off from Gatwick airport to Valencia at 7.30 in the morning, an early start for all! On arrival, the boys and girls teams checked in to their home for the week before a short walk to L’Alqueria, Valencia Basket’s state of the art training facility which has eleven, yes eleven full size basketball courts, as well as a huge gym/fitness centre, and a restaurant!

Here, the group were able to watch multiple Under 18 Euroleague games in the Adidas Next Generation tournament which included our very own former JMA Rocket, Matthew Marsh, who is in his second year playing for FC Barcelona and doing very well! To end our first day in Spain, we watched the Valencia Women’s first team play in La Fonteta, the main arena. They lost to a very impressive Girona team but it was awesome to see Carmen Segura’s sister Lorena back in the squad!

The following day was pretty similar, watching a variety of games which culminated in Valencia’s ACB team hosting Tenerife and recording a 98-91 win in front of 8,000 orange fans! What an atmosphere and such a great opportunity to see some of the highest quality basketball on show.

After 2 days of intense basketball, it was time for a change of scenery as the group had a guided tour of the beautiful city of Valencia, learning about it’s history and traditions. After watching the Valencia Women train, it was the boys who would play their first game of the trip as they beat academy side Ferran Pizcueta 76-56 despite being a bit rusty from the Christmas break!

The group watched the ACB team train (so privileged!) and talked with Head Coach Jaume Ponsarnau as well as having some practice of our own, it was time to see 2020 in Valencia style! We went outside the town hall with probably thousands of other people but it was a really family orientated atmosphere as midnight struck with lots of music and fireworks. The behaviour of all students (and staff!) was exemplary so we were really impressed with their conduct and representation of JMA Reading Rockets.

A tour of Valencia’s magnificent Oceanographic centre coupled to a quite breath-taking dolphin show! Everyone really embraced the culture of that trip and this was certainly one of those moments.

The following day was preparation day for the main basketball event of the trip as both teams were getting ready to play in the Valencia Basket Cup. After their sessions, the group were hosted by a Spanish academy players parents for the afternoon as they put on a quite magnificent spread (sounds very English I know) including the traditional Spanish food, paella! A really nice afternoon was had by all and we were most grateful for that time together.

Tournament time soon came upon us and it was to be a very busy couple of days. The girls team faced some very high level opposition and were able to claim 7th position, a very respectable achievement considering who they were playing and their ever-growing injury list! The boys did incredibly well winning every game including beating Valencia Basket B in the final to lift the trophy and cap off a fantastic experience in the city of Valencia. The group also managed to fit in watching a Euroleague game on the Friday night as Valencia secured an impressive 91-77 win over Alba Berlin!

It was time for the group to move to their second destination of the tour as they embarked on the four hour coach trip to Madrid! As we arrived to Aristos, our new home for the next five days, we were greeted by a former Rockets Coach and our friend Raul Lozano who was hosting us during

our time in Madrid. The first day in the capital city was however quite a calm, relaxed day for everyone having just played 6 games in three days but the group did travel to the Wizink centre to watch Real Madrid v Valencia in the ACB, a game narrowly won by the hosts.

The first ‘proper’ outing for the group was a trip to the city centre where the players were put into mixed groups and set various challenges for the three hours they were given. Tasks such as eating tapas, asking someone a question in Spanish, doing a group dance in front of a famous building were just three of the nine tasks set which was done so well by all involved. To cap off this trip, no fewer than 5 former players of JMA Rockets visited us which was great as it showed us the impact we had during their time in England. The day was completed with the boys back in action as they played Aristos Under 20s and recorded a narrow win.

Wednesday saw a trip to Real Madrid’s iconic football stadium, the Bernabau, which was an amazing venue to go and see as well as learning all about the history of one of Europe’s best club’s. Some individual practices as well as some studying and resting completed the day before the final full day of the trip was upon us.

On Thursday, the group had one to one meetings with staff about their time in Spain as well as presenting their tasks from Tuesday, a very funny hour looking back at what they had managed to achieve! One final trip for the group was back to the Wizink centre to watch a Euroleague game between the hosts and BC Zalgris before heading back to the accommodation and getting ready to fly home.

The trip ended with the arrival back to JMA around midday in what was a fantastic two weeks for everyone involved. A huge thank you must be given to Erasmus, the John Madejski Academy, and Reading Rockets for all their help and support in making this trip happen as well as all the staff for their tireless commitment and organisation! Finally, a big congratulations to the players for representing themselves, the school, and the club so well over the two weeks as everyone involved gets right back to work with their respective teams as the business end of the 2019-2020 descends upon us!

Reading Rockets announce new partnership with Secure Media Services

The Reading Rockets are delighted to announce a new partnership with Secure Media Services who will be supporting our NBL Division 1 Men in 2019-2020 season. Secure Media Services offer a range of logistic solutions with a focus on flexible, customer centric experiences.

The Reading based company that operates worldwide, has supported the family club for a number of years but decided to take the step into sponsorship for the current season. Reading Rockets owner Gary Johnson said “We’re extremely grateful for the support of Jamie and his company, Secure Media Services. After a few meetings he could see our vision over the next 3 years and the strides we’ve made off the court with our league leading live stream and increased presence in the digital space.” Gary went on to say “External sponsorship is vital for the longevity and planned growth of our club over the next few seasons and we feel local businesses, like Jamie’s Secure Media Services, are brilliantly aligned in terms of outlook, culture, and drive.”

Jamie Ward, who is the founder and owner of Secure Media Services, is preparing for a busy period with Black Friday and Christmas approaching, believes the partnership truly benefits both organisations “The work The Rockets do in the community, as well as their impeccable reputation around Reading and the UK made partnering easy”. He also commented on the potential exposure his company can see through this sponsorship “Reading Rockets have significant followings across the social media platforms as well as a live stream that can sees thousands of views each game which can only benefit the visibility of SMS”.

You can see the Secure Media Services logo printed on the home kit shorts as well as their banners at all Rockets games.

Please be sure to visit https://www.securemediaservices.co.uk/ to see how they can help with any of your personal or business logistics…And be sure to say hello to Jamie at home games!

Match Report – Reading Rockets v Nottingham McDonalds Hoods

vs

Results

TeamScoreOutcome
Reading Rockets98Win
Nottingham Hoods85Loss

After a blistering opening quarter Rockets were held back in the second before igniting in the third and controlling the fourth period to have a convincing win at Rivermead on Sunday evening whilst also securing joint second place in the league with 4 other teams (as shown in the league table attached.)

Academy student David Chive was truly on fire from tip as he stroked 4 trebles in this quarter with Liam Davis hitting a brace himself whilst the ultimate Player of the Game, Nick Richards gave assists, made a steal and hit a pair of jump shots. Rockets offence was a delight to behold and their use of the 24 second clock spot on as they drained a pair of buzzer beating trebles in the last minute before the first break to lead 30-16.

The talented Hoods played with a press for much of the second period to cause Rockets many issues and restricting Rockets to just 14 points. Hoods hit 30 of their own to lead into the interval 46-44, much to the surprise of Rockets supporters as Hoods went on a 26-12 run to finish the quarter. Matias Boho and Ed Potter opened their personal tallies as did young Sam Grant but Head Coach Alan Keane did as he did last week, brought the issues to a head at the team meeting interval and launched them with a new strategy for the third quarter., one item was to move the ball quickly but accurately again and to drive to the basket. This Rockets did well as they drew fouls early on as they drove determinedly to score, finishing well and entertaining the supporters with a brace of slams. Liam Davis took down an offensive rebound to score as A J Carr made a crucial tip away and interception. Hoods took a time out as Rockets were beginning to enjoy themselves again but a 17-8 run as part of a 32-18 quarter saw Rockets ahead 76-64 as the final stanza began.

A Richards dish to A J saw the American stroke a treble moments before Pau Major dished to Ben Dixon to score. A cut eye saw A J leave the court but the mercurial youngster Chive gave an exquisite assist to Boho to hit a treble and see Rockets maintain their double digit advantage throughout the quarter . Richards and Davis enjoyed three quick exchanges of assists for each other and seeing Richards have one slam and Davis a pair to finish Rockets scoring a see them move further up the league table.

Top scorers for Rockets were Player of the Game for the second consecutive week, Nick Richards with 26pts, 8 rebounds, 7 assists and 6 steals followed by Liam Davis with 22 pts, and 7 rebounds. David Chive had 14 pts, 6 assists and 4 steals whilst Matias Boho had 13 pts, 3 rebounds and 2 assists. Ben Dixon also had a double digit score of 10 pts , took down 6 rebounds, made a pair of assists and had 2 steals.

Details

Date Time League Season
20/10/2019 17:00 NBL Div 1 2019 / 2020

Venue

Rivermead
24 Richfield Ave, Reading, Reading RG1, UK