Tag: #letsgorockets

TIP time for this weekends match


This weekend’s top of the table clash against league leaders Team Solent Kestrels at Bohunt School, Arborfield RG2 9ND has necessarily been brought forward to Rockets’ regular tip time of 5pm (not 7pm as previously announced).

Reading Rockets v Team Solent Kestrels

Reading Rockets vs Team Solent Kestrels

NBL Division 1

Rockets looking to pick up two more wins in hunt for a top four finish

Reading Rockets (12-7) will be looking to extend their four game winning streak this weekend when they travel to the East Midlands on Saturday evening to take on Leicester Warriors (7-12) (5.30pm tip-off) before returning to Reading to host Derby Trailblazers on Sunday afternoon at Rivermead Leisure Complex, 5pm tip-off. Last weekend’s game against Kent Crusaders was pushed back 48 hours due to the severe weather but the Berkshire outfit wrapped up a hard fought 92-81 win on Monday evening to keep their hopes alive of a top four finish and home court advantage in the first round of the play-offs.

In speaking after seeing his team chalk up win number four on the spin and ahead of this weekend’s double header, Rockets Head Coach Manuel Peña Garcés was pleased to record another victory but knows defensively his team needs to be better this coming weekend. He said,

I thought we did very well offensively against Kent on Monday and probably could have been even better but it was defensively that we need to look at and address this week because Leicester will play a similar way on Saturday and we need to make some improvements technically and tactically. Having said that, I was pleased we were able to win the game and keep up our decent form results wise but I know we can give more and that is what we will be aiming for this week.

This weekend we play two teams that are fighting a different battle to us currently but that are both capable of upsetting the odds on the day. Leicester is a very physical, upbeat team and gave us a tough game at home, whilst Derby has a good roster and will be looking to return to winning ways. We will prepare for both teams thoroughly and make sure that we continue to work on our application leading up to and during both games.

Rockets have a few injury concerns heading into this weekend’s double header with the team’s young trio of Alex Drincic, Adrian Nosa Castillo, and Iñigo Perez Baena all doubtful. 18 year old Drincic is out of action with tendinitis in his foot and Spanish point guard Iñigo Perez Baena will miss out through a broken nose. His Spanish counterpart will be a game time decision as the 6’5 guard/forward has an ankle complaint but may be fit in time for Saturday’s tip-off at Leicester Warriors. The Berkshire outfit will also be seeing the availability of Captain Danny Carter and may need to draft in cover for the 29 year old with this being decided before Saturday.

Manuel Peña Garcés’ men won both the reverse fixtures against Leicester Warriors (75-70) and Derby Trailblazers (92-76) before the turn of the year and will be hoping they can make it six wins on the bounce this weekend as they put pressure on the top four in NBL Division One with seven games remaining.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

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Rockets look to bounce back from consecutive defeats as they take on league leaders

Reading Rockets (8-5) will be looking to bounce back from two consecutive defeats for the first time this season when they make the short journey to Southampton on Sunday afternoon (3pm tip-off) to take on current NBL Division One league leaders Team Solent Kestrels (10-3). Rockets suffered their second defeat on the spin as they lost a close encounter to Hemel Storm (8-5) last Saturday by 88 points to 81 as they dropped to sixth in the table but still amongst the chasing pack. This Sunday’s opponents snapped their six game winning streak when they lost out reigning champions Team Northumbria 65-86 last weekend but remain top of the pile and undefeated against the Rockets in the two games already this season. Kestrels were victorious in the National Trophy back in September when they took a 93-78 away win before defeating the Berkshire outfit in the National Cup, gaining an 89-67 victory to lead the series 2-0.

Rockets Head Coach Manuel Peña Garcés was not too despondent after Saturday’s loss to Hemel Storm and was pleased with an improved performance from his team but knows the tests keep coming thick and fast with more work to be done on the practice court. The Spaniard said,

We put in a better performance on Saturday and in parts of the game played some great basketball. We are really pleased with these elements and must build on this going forward. A few areas still remain a concern in terms of our fourth quarter play but I am confident we can address these quickly and take forward the very positive parts we are seeing.

This Sunday we have an opportunity to do this against one of the best teams in the league. Solent has done a really good job building a deep roster over the last two seasons and are now really competitive and currently the team to beat. They have talent and cover at every position but are not unbeatable as Northumbria showed last weekend. We will be ready to play a tough game whilst making sure our intent and communication is at its best in what will be an awesome challenge for us.

Rockets go into Sunday’s match-up with the positive news that 6’9 forward Danny Carter will be returning to the squad after a short break. The 29 year old has not featured since early November but is looking forward to being back in action after his time out. Carter will provide some much needed impetus in the front court with American Tim Gill playing extended minutes in the last few weeks. The Berkshire outfit should have a fully fit roster to choose from as Manuel Peña Garcés’ men look to break their duck against Team Solent Kestrels this term and put back to back defeats behind them as they look to keep up the pace at the right end of the NBL Division One table.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Rockets to face National Cup finalists

Reading Rockets (8-4) will make the short journey to Hemel this Saturday when they take on the Storm (7-5) in a fourth v fifth clash in NBL Division One. Rockets split their opening two games of 2018 as they comfortably defeated Lancashire Spinners (0-12) 107-67 before suffering a surprise loss at the hands of Team Newcastle (5-10) as the north east side came away from Rivermead with a priceless 67-63 victory to put a dent in Reading’s title hopes. Saturday’s opponents Hemel Storm had a great start to the opening weekend of the year as they beat Loughborough Student Riders in the semi-final of the National Cup to secure a place in their first ever final: however the Hertfordshire team were defeated by Team Solent Kestrels in league play going down 87-86 the following day.

Rockets Assistant Coach Alan Keane was in a reflective mood after last weekend but is really looking forward to the challenge that an impressive Hemel team possess. The Irishman said,

Last weekend provided us with some much needed feedback on where we need to be better and the clarity needed in every situation. This is a work in progress and something that we will be focusing on to keep alive in all of our practices this week and moving forward. We have a great group of guys and now we must challenge ourselves to be better in every moment as well as review and reflect honestly and with intent.”

Hemel has proved to be a force to be reckoned with and they will be on a high after making it to the National Cup final. They boast a lot of individual talent on their roster and are a very difficult team to play against, especially at home but not impossible! Our job will be to have a clear and concise game plan as well as work on the attributes I have already mentioned and I think this is an ideal game for us to put this to the test.

Rockets go into this weekend’s match-up with Hemel Storm with no-one on the treatment table but the game does come too soon for 6’9 forward Danny Carter’s return; the 29 year old coming back into the fray next week. Head Coach Manuel Peña Garcés should have a full squad to choose from as his team look to complete the double over their opponents for the first time in three years with the Berkshire outfit fending off a fourth quarter comeback in the first meeting between the two teams back in October as the Reading team claimed a 95-94 victory.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Rockets take on Dragons in final game of 2017

Reading Rockets (7-2) will make the long journey north on Saturday when they take on Bradford Dragons (3-6) in their final NBL Division One game of 2017 (6.15pm tip-off). Rockets ground out a hard fought 75-70 victory over Leicester Warriors last Sunday to keep up the pace at the top of the league and will be hoping to close out the year with a positive result against an opponent they have already beaten in league play this season back in November when they recorded a 95-74 win at Rivermead Leisure Complex.

Head Coach Manuel Peña Garcès was relieved to see his team just do enough to win last Sunday’s game but also had praise for this team as they weathered the Warriors fourth quarter comeback, an area the Berkshire team have struggled with of late. The Spanish play-caller said,

I thought we played well in parts against Leicester but it was one of those games where we had to really dig deep to come out with a positive result and I felt we did that at times which is a good step for us considering the ending we have had in recent games. We need to be better with the quality we deliver and be more consistent in the way we do so and that is something that will be key for us after the Christmas break.

This weekend we make the long journey to Bradford to take on a competitive and well coached team. Chris (Mellor, Bradford Head Coach) always prepares his teams well and at home they are a real threat so we will need to be ready for the different challenge this game will pose compared to the one last month. We will be working on elements of what they will potentially do but keep the focus on ourselves and being better as we prepare for the last game of this year.

Overall I am pleased with where we are to date. We have had some ups and downs so far this year but this has provided us all with some positive learning and the necessity to keep working and building throughout the season. Our aim is to keep doing this and making sure we leave no stone unturned as we continue to apply pressure at the top of the division, a place where we would like to be at the end of this season.

Rockets go into Saturday’s match-up with Bradford with no new injury concerns but will be without duo Iñigo Perez Baena and Adrian Nosa Castillo who are on Under 18 duty back home in Reading. The Bradford game is the final time the Reading team will take to the court in 2017 as their scheduled game against Team Solent Kestrels is postponed as the Southampton based side are in National Cup semi-final action.

Follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk