Tag: #matchreport

Match Report – Leicester Warriors v Reading Rockets



Leicester Warriors83Win
Reading Rockets71Loss

An already injury stricken Rockets side travelled to the Midlands having just heard that joint captain Ed Potter was out with an injury and the ever improving Kivuvu Live was sick. Pau Mayor was shirted up and was keen to try out his Achilles strain but Matias Boho’ knee injury continues.

Warriors opened up an 8-2 gap within the opening exchanges before Nick Richards took down his own offensive rebound to get Rockets troubling the scoreboard. Recent signing Leome Francis had a personal following as he was previously with nearby Northampton and he scored five quick points with an inside move, a coast to coast score and a penalty point to level the game on nine each. The scores were tied on 11 and 13 before Rockets went on a 11-3 finishing run as part of a 20-5 run to lead at the first break 24-16.

Warriors took the second quarter 20-13 having begun this period with a 7-0 run before a Richards tip in kept Rockets ahead by a single point. Academy youngster David Chive stroked the first of his three trebles but Rockets soon found themselves in team foul trouble from which Warriors capitalised. Another Academy player David Obediah took an assist from Liam Davis to score before Davis made a key tip in himself. With the game in a nip and tuck phase, it was anyone’s guess as to who would lead at the interval but that honour fell to Rockets with the slenderest of margins at 37-36.

Warriors’ American guard T J Henderson was on fire as he stroked trebles from all round the arc as Warriors hit Rockets with a storm taking the quarter 31-11 having hit five trebles in this time as Rockets turned the ball over and just couldn’t finish even within a foot of the basket. With a score line of 48-67 it was going to take an almighty effort from Rockets to take the victory in the final period but when Chive hit a treble and Richards drove to score, Warriors looked a little concerned. However Rockets missed four from four from the line whilst Warriors hit all theirs so Rockets found themselves adrift by 17 points after just over three minutes of the final stanza at 54-71. Davis picked up too many fouls so together with Chive was fouled out of the game but Richards and Francis worked tirelessly to keep Rockets close as with Rockets having won the home game by 15 points, with the league being so tight, Rockets wanted to keep the head to head should the league points be level in late March. This they did after Head Coach Alan Keane called his final time -out as a reminder and the guys not only stopped Warriors but also saw Francis score leaving the deficit at the buzzer just twelve at 71-83.

Rockets find themselves in a scramble with 6 other teams vying for a home tie in the Play-offs when they hope to have a fully fit squad .

Top scorers for Rockets were Nick Richards with 26 pts., 7 rebounds and 6 steals with both Rockets’ big guys having double doubles as Liam Davis scored 14 pts., and took down 11 rebounds whilst Leome Francis hit 13 pts., and took down 13 rebounds though Warriors American guards was supreme on the day as he hit 40 pts., took down 9 rebounds and made 5 assists


Date Time League Season
15/02/2020 15:00 NBL Div 1 2019 / 2020


Braunstone LC
A47, Leicester, Leicester LE3 1JN, UK

Match Report – Cup Final – Solent Kestrels v Reading Rockets

Solent Kestrels 90 v 67 Reading Rockets.

Despite losing the National Cup Final on Sunday to the unbeaten Kestrels both Rockets Chairman Gary Johnson  and Head Coach Alan Keane were extremely proud of the way the depleted team played and represented Rockets in one of only 3 National trophies this season.

A final Saturday morning fitness test on both Spanish players, Matias Boho and Pau Mayor, revealed that neither could participate in any way due to knee ligament and Achilles injuries respectively, so coupled to the absence of long term injured A J Carr and new signing Leome Francis being cup tied, the Berkshire outfit took to the court with just 4 senior players. However the six Academy players made much contribution as they played 43% of the game showing just how blessed Rockets is with such talent for today and the future. ‘Our programme is designed for the development of young players and giving them exposure at the highest level of English basketball’ said Rockets Chairman ‘And in Alan Keane we have the very best coach to develop these players for either USA colleges or the professional game in main land Europe as well as with Rockets ‘ added Johnson.  He was immensely proud of Rockets achievement in reaching the National Cup Final and the way they played throughout the game, playing hard and raising their game from what looked like a game too far with the devastating injuries Rockets currently have.

Obviously Head Coach Alan Keane was disappointed with the loss but nonetheless very proud of his young academy players. The talented and deep Kestrels squad  imposed themselves on the game from the tip hitting the opening 6 points but Ben Dixon and Liam Davis hit back with drives and jump shots whilst Nick Richards hit a fade away shot and then immediately ran the length of the court to make a stop letting all the Rockets supporters and his team mates know that Rockets were here to play at their best whatever the circumstances.

After the 15-28 first quarter reverse Rockets lost the services of Davis as he was called for a second foul when Rockets fans thought he’d made a great block. Besides the ball not dropping into the basket as frequently as they’d hoped, Rockets persevered as Ed Potter was working tirelessly inside scoring and taking down rebounds with Dixon adding to his personal points tally though it was a 19 point deficit at the interval as Rockets trailed 30-49.

Just what could Coach Keane get out of his team in the second half. An excellent display is the answer as Rockets won the third quarter 19-16 and just lost this half by the smallest of differences 37-41 as Richards came alive offensively hitting 18 points , young Ross Stepney hit Rockets sole treble , David Chive took down 8 rebounds and made 3 steals as Rockets upped the intensity and speed. Davis enjoyed one of the few slam dunks in the game and Rockets players flung themselves on the floor to hustle for possession but a brace of trebles from Kestrels in the last minute gave the scoreboard an unfair reflection on Rockets efforts.

The game’s top scorer was Rockets Nick Richards who hit 22 pts, took down 8 rebounds and made a pair of steals and 5 assists in a complete performance. Rockets Ed Potter had a double double with 16 pts and 13 rebounds whilst Liam Davis scored 10 pts and took down 9 rebounds . It would be remiss not to mention Academy player David Chive who also took down 8 rebounds and made 3 steals to compliment his 5 points.


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Reading Rockets Under 18 Girls v Ipswich

Reading Rockets Under 18 Girls 57-60 Ipswich

From tip to buzzer this was an enthralling affair as defending champions Rockets trailed by a single score for most of the game but levelled with 2 minutes remaining and were just 2 points down with 8.1 seconds on the clock and certainly in the ascendancy but one very tough foul call went against Rockets and Ipswich sealed the game from the free throw line.

Anabel Latorre scored Rockets first points before the player of the game, Rockets Sitota Gines opened her account. Jess Ford scored inside and captain Gabi Sanchez led by example by taking an early charge before Gines made a superb steal, went coast to coast and finished giving Rockets a 10-6 early advantage. Gines took a charge but 4 unanswered Ipswich points drew the game level for the first time at 10 each midway through the opening period. A 7-0 Ipswich run caused Rockets Head Coach Antonio Acuna to call a time out from which Latorre scored inside again bringing the score to 16-19 against Rockets as the quarter ended.

A second big Ipswich treble took them out to an 8 point lead at 24-16 but Gines reduced the deficit and Sanchez finished a fine spoon move . Ford hit a jump shot and Gines made a 3 point play to see Rockets adrift by a single point at 25-26. However another crucial Ipswich  treble edged them further ahead. Rockets’ determination shone through again with Sanchez as she raced the length of the court to stop another Ipswich score quickly followed by Carmen Segura Moreno hitting a buzzer beating treble leaving Rockets 28-34 down at the interval.

The third period began with huge intensity from both finalists but neither team scoring before Latorre hit a brace of free throws. Unfortunately Ipswich hit another treble though Gines kept Rockets in touch with a fine drive and score. Rockets upped the tempo a little and showed great tenacity with a couple of key floor hustles, a Latorre block before the outstanding Gines made a steal, went coast to coast to score as Rockets stayed in contention at 38-43 as the final stanza began.

Latorre made a excellent stop and then finished well inside but Ipswich now had a 47-40 advantage with just 6 minutes to go. A Segura Moreno stop and a Ford finish was quickly followed by four Gines points as Rockets got within a single point at 48-49. The atmosphere in the packed Essex University Arena was amazing and though Rockets were knocked back with a buzzer beating Ipswich treble the courageous Rockets girls fought on levelling the game on 52 as Gines and Ford scored with less than 3 minutes remaining. Latorre made a stop but then hit 4 points before Ford made a jump shot to see the score 54-56 with just 48.8 seconds left and Rockets playing brilliantly. However a very tough officials call which many people in the arena thought had gone Rockets way was called against them and Ipswich hit a point from the free throw line to be three up and saw two of Rockets key players fouled out and Ipswich score both free throws.  Mia Thompson tried a huge treble but was fouled so went to the line. She hit all three penalty shots so Rockets were now just 57-59 adrift with 8.1 secs remaining on the clock. Ipswich took a time-out and scored a single point but Rockets’ brave effort was about to be extinguished as the 3 point effort fell short and Ipswich took the cup 60-57.

This was a great advert for the very best of Under 18 Girls basketball as witnessed by the packed arena. Top scorers for Rockets were Sitota Gines with the game’s highest points total of 21 which was complemented with 14 rebounds, 6 steals, 5 assists and a block whilst Anabel Latorre also had a double double with 12 points and 12 rebounds as Jess Ford hit 10 points.

To keep up to date with all the latest news and information, follow the Rockets on social media; Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

Match Report – Reading Rockets v Liverpool Basketball Club



Reading Rockets96Win
Liverpool Basketball84Loss

When you join a new club you hope to make an impression early. Well Leome Francis certainly did that at Rivermead on Sunday afternoon as he had a double double with 28 pts and 17 rebounds bringing much acknowledgement from his team mates, his Head Coach and the Rockets supporters alike. The game began with Francis on the bench having only had 2 training sessions since his transfer from Northampton Titans in mid- week but four minutes into the game Coach Keane released the 6’5” forward , who has been recruited to help fill the vacancy left by A J Carr’s season long broken hand., onto the court to tumultuous applause….and he didn’t disappoint as he led all Rockets players with 8 personal points in the opening quarter as well as dominating the boards. Liam Davis had scored Rockets first points with a floater before David Chive stroked a treble and Nick Richards hit both penalty shots as he was fouled as he drove to score. The returning Aussie Ben Dixon gave the first of his seven assists to Francis to score before the forward spun and finished giving Rockets a single point lead at 13—12. A crucial Richards block interrupted the three point shooting of the visitors who had tied the scores on 17, 20 and 23 as they hit four trebles in the opening period and edged ahead 24-23.

Liverpool extended their advantage as they scored the opening five points inside the opening 90 seconds of quarter two to lead 29-23, much to the annoyance of Coach Keane. Francis stopped the rot and Richards again scored with a pair of free throws before Francis scored inside and then Liam Davis was also secure from the penalty stripe as he took down an offensive rebound, tying the scores on 31. Richards stole the ball and sent an assist to Davis to slam dunk before Spanish guard Pau Mayor scored and Richards sent an assist to Francis and eased Rockets ahead 38-32 with an 11-3 run, causing Liverpool to call a time -out. In their next 2 possessions the visitors stroked a brace of trebles , so much a part of their armoury and with two brothers Reiss and Ellis Haggith. Davis scored well inside and drew the foul making it a 3 point play moments before Dixon gave an assist for Richards to finish exquisitely with a finger roll and seeing the hosts in the locker room with a 48-43 lead.

Rockets opened the scoring at the start of the third period as the two big men imposed themselves as Francis took down an offensive rebound and gave an assist to Davis to score with his trademark slam dunk . Dixon drove and scored before a 3 man fast break was finished with a Davis slam. Rockets defence was improving as Richards made a block and Francis a stop as Rockets enjoyed a 56-47 lead . A Francis base line drive and score was followed by a spin and score but the Liverpool sharp shooters struck again with a treble to stay 5-6 points adrift throughout the quarter which finished 64-59 in Rockets favour.

Rockets powered in 32 points in this final stanza as Richards helped himself to 13 points and the twin big men attackers hit 11 between them. A pair of Davis jump shots got Rockets up and running before Dixon waited for the fast approaching Richards to rise high, score and hit the penalty shot as he was fouled in scoring. Richards gave an assist to Chive who followed up that score with a pull up jump shot too. Francis gave an assist to Richards who then made a pair of audacious steals and finishes to see Rockets with a double digit lead of 88-78. Mayor scored with a lay-up before Francis finished his cameo debut with a brace of offensive rebounds and scores. Needless to say he was the Nando’s Impact Player of the Game .

With Rockets facing a mid-week game at Barking Abbey on Tuesday evening, Head Coach Alan Keane is hoping that Matias Boho will be fit .

Top scorers for Rockets were Leome Francis with 28 pts, 17 rebounds whilst also drawing 7 fouls. Nick Richards hit 23 pts, made 6 steals and gave 4 assists as Liam Davis hit 21 pts, and took down 7 rebounds. David Chive was Rockets other player finishing with 11 pts, as the academy players also took down 4 rebounds.


Date Time League Season
26/01/2020 15:30 NBL Div 1 2019 / 2020


24 Richfield Ave, Reading, Reading RG1, UK

Match Report – Reading Rockets v Myerscough College – National Cup Semi Final



Reading Rockets77Win
Myerscough College58Loss

Rockets reached their first final in 4 years after reaching the Div.1 Play-off championship and National Trophy semi-finals in 2017/18 and 2018/19 respectively.

Despite being without the services of Sam Grant ( long term back injury) coupled to the absence of Rockets Australian guard Ben Dixon, (back home at his brother’s wedding) , Rockets eased themselves into the final with speed of transition causing Myerscough to turn the ball over too much and Rockets capitalising with 35 points from this source alone. With a comfortable lead in the initial three periods, Coach Keane gave his 6 academy players much court time in the final quarter as they gain experience for the final on Sun 2nd Feb at Essex University with a 3.30 pm tip. Rockets couldn’t complete the transfer of their new recruit before the game but he’ll be registered for next week’s Sunday Rivermead game against Liverpool. Which tips at 3.30 pm.

Liam Davis scored Rockets first points with a left handed hook before Pau Mayor finished with a lay-up . Nick Richards began his usual up beat tempo with a fine drive and score, also drawing the foul and making it a 3 point play. Matias Boho took an assist from Richards to stroke a treble from the top of the key and see Rockets enjoy a lead of 16-8 before Coach Keane introduced Ross Stepney and Asher Ndal onto court and seeing Rockets go to the first break with a 22-16 advantage.

Richards and Ndah were the high personal points contributors of the second period with 8 and 7 points respectively with 17 yo Ndah hitting an impressive treble and making another three point play as he was fouled in scoring and then hit the penalty shot too. Rockets had quickly moved to a 36-18 lead before Richards finished with a tip in after rising high and mighty above the opposition. Another academy player, Kivuvu Live, made his debut appearance at Rivermead and soon hit a jump shot to score . Rockets captain, Ed Potter, was leading by example by taking a charge but Rockets thirteen steals showed the main difference between the teams at the interval with Rockets 46-28 ahead.

Myerscough scored first after Rockets missed on their opening possession but it was back to normal service as Richards made yet another steal and then sent an assist to Boho to score. Davis hit a pair from the free throw line as Rockets reached 50 points with a 20 point lead. Mayor and Richards hit trebles whilst Potter worked tirelessly under the basket to score seven personal points as Rockets went into the final quarter 65 – 37 ahead.

Again Myerscough scored first and had a 7-3 run interrupted only as David Chive banked a treble. Kivuvu played well on his debut and hit six more points in this quarter though Myerscough took the opportunity as Coach Keane rested all his senior players and took the final quarter 21-12 . A Kivuvu dish to Chive was one of the highlights of this period as the future looks promising for Rockets academy players as they are such an integral part of Rockets Seniors and seek to further develop themselves at the highest level in English basketball. The final score was 77 -58 though the primary goal was a fine victory and cup final place, something the team delivered and deserved.

Top scorers for Rockets were Nick Richards with 16 pts, 6 assists and 4 steals as Matias Boho hit 13 pts, took down 5 rebounds and made 3 steals. Captain Ed Potter was also in double figures as he hit 10 pts and took down 7 rebounds though watching the development of the academy players remains a great joy for the Rockets leadership team and the supporters.


Date Time League Season
19/01/2020 17:00 National Cup 2019 / 2020


24 Richfield Ave, Reading, Reading RG1, UK