Tag: #letsgorockets

Rockets looking to continue good form with the visit of Derby Trailblazers

Reading Rockets (7-2) will be looking to keep up their excellent form this weekend as they welcome Derby Trailblazers (5-4) to Reading on Sunday afternoon (5pm tip-off), finally returning to their regular home venue of Rivermead Leisure Complex. Rockets secured a pair of wins last weekend grinding out an 81-67 away win at basement outfit Essex and Herts Leopards (0-9) before advancing to the National Cup quarter-finals with the narrowest of victories in Nottingham, beating the Hoods 78-77 to make it nine wins out of ten in all competitions.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was a happy man after last weekend’s double success but will be hoping his team recover in time for this Sunday’s clash against Derby when they entertain the East Midlands side back in front of their home crowd, something the Irishman is looking forward to. He said,

“Coming off a double header weekend away and three games on the bounce away from the Rivermead, it will be really exciting to get back to playing in front of our home fan base. Derby, another potential top four team in the league will bring different challenges. A team very well coached team who compete as tough as any team in the league. They are capable to score in a variety of ways but obviously Malcolm Smith will need a lot of attention from us. A tough run of league games coming our way and Derby presents as big as challenge as any.”

The Berkshire outfit go into Sunday’s match-up with a number of injury and illness concerns. British guard Ed Potter missed Sunday’s National Cup win against Nottingham with a suspected broken finger and the Reading team won’t know if he will be able to play this weekend until just before the game. Young British point guard David Chive missed both last weekend’s games through illness but the Rockets are hoping the 18 year old makes a full recovery before this weekend’s top of the table clash. Spanish guard Pau Mayor was also out of action last Sunday with a dead leg after featuring heavily during Saturday’s victory over Essex and Herts Leopards. The 23 year old has been receiving treatment on his thigh complaint and will also be a game time decision alongside Ed Potter. Finally, academy player and GB Under 18 Sam Grant also missed last weekend’s double triumph with an ongoing back injury and knee complaint he sustained in an EABL game against Barking Abbey but it is unsure if he will be back to feature this weekend.

With Coach Keane sweating on the fitness of a number of players you can keep up to date with all the latest news and information by following 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 looking to bounce back from defeat to league leaders

Reading Rockets’ (6-2) six game winning streak came to an end last weekend when they were defeated by current league leaders and reigning NBL Division One champions Solent Kestrels (8-0) by 106 points to 89 but remain in the top three in the division.

The Berkshire outfit will look to return to winning ways this weekend when they take on the leagues basement team Essex and Herts Leopards (0-8) on Saturday evening, 5.45pm tip-off at Oaklands College before travelling to the East Midlands to take on fellow NBL Division One outfit Nottingham Hoods (1-7) in the fourth round of the National Cup on Sunday.

Saturday’s encounter against the Leopards will be the first official game between the two teams this term with a pre-season friendly match-up ending in a Rockets home victory 97-74. The Reading team have already faced Sunday’s National Cup opponents after defeating Nottingham at home 98-85 last month in league play.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane has reflected on Saturday’s loss to Solent but is looking forward to getting back to action this weekend against two teams who’s results don’t reflect the dangers they both pose in his opinion. The Irishman said,

“This weekend we face a vastly improved team in Essex who have had a tough set of results so far but traditionally have started games really well so we need to be wary of this. Their record doesn’t reflect their positive performances and they have a lot of talent on their roster so we will prepare for them like any other team whilst keeping the majority of the focus on ourselves and being the best we can be.”

“Sunday brings a different challenge against a team we have already faced this season in Nottingham who have so far not got the results they probably deserve so again it’s only a matter of time before things start to click for them. We will need to respect them as we would any other team in the league and they have a strong inside presence as well as a lot of firepower from different positions so this will be a heavily focused defensive game for us.”

Rockets go into this weekend’s double header with no new injury concerns and with two games upcoming, Coach Keane will be needing to use his roster with eighty minutes of basketball to play in 24 hours. The Berkshire outfit went out at the fourth round stage of the National Cup last season when they were beaten 76-60 by Manchester Magic so the Reading team will be hoping to put those woes behind them and return to winning ways in the league with an opportunity to record win number nine in ten games post this Sunday.

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

Match Report – Team Solent Kestrels v Reading Rockets



Team Solent Kestrels104Win
Reading Rockets91Loss

Rockets travelled south to try and take Solent’s very impressive winning streak on their home court where they haven’t lost since January 2018 with a 24 game unbeaten run, coupled to a 19 game unbeaten run in all competitions. Rockets had got close to them at the end of last season with a single point defeat 90-91 and with both teams in great form, a titanic battle was guaranteed.

Rockets were on a 6-0 league winning run and Solent 7-0. Rockets won the tip off and Liam Davis scored their first points quickly answered by Solent’s first score but 9 quick points from Nick Richards and A J Carr saw Rockets enjoy a 13-4 lead. Solent responded with a 14-1 run and it was ‘game on’ . A further brace of trebles from Carr and a crucial block kept Rockets within 2 points of their opposition but a big Solent treble in the last 30 seconds saw the hosts go into the first break with a 28-21 advantage.

Carr again got Rockets firing and with Matias Boho making a 3 point play the scores were quickly level on 28 each. A great delayed pass from Pau Mayor to the fast approaching Richards to score was followed by Carr’s fourth treble of the first half and saw Rockets have a 12-0 run to lead 33-28. Solent came back hard and fast with Elliot Sentance finding it difficult to miss as he hit 19 points before the break giving Solent a smaller lead of 52-47 which would have looked even better for Rockets if he hadn’t struck another buzzer beating treble on the half time hooter. Pau Mayor had stroked a pair of trebles to get Rockets very close but with a 12-5 foul tally against Rockets, the third period was going to be crucial.

Again Rockets scored first after Richards had sent a superb assist to Ben Dixon to stroke a treble, a very tough charge call in Rockets favour was given as a technical foul on Dixon…hard to take in the light of the first half foul count. Rockets re-ignited and David Chive scored both penalty shots having been fouled as he drove to score and then when all Rockets fans screamed for an 8 second back court violation by Solent , the ball went to Solent’s Sentance who hit another treble to compound the irony for Rockets. Soon Rockets found themselves 54-69 down but Boho, Richards and Ed Potter ( twice ) got Rockets to within six points before another buzzer beating treble brought the score to 74 -65 in Solent’s favour.

A Davis inside score, a Dixon finish and a brilliant Davis tip in drew the scores closer before some great floor hustle from Mayor lifted Rockets and Carr scored again. However four trebles in just over a minute by Solent took the game away from Rockets as Solent enjoyed a 15 point lead again at 94-79. A brace of Rockets trebles from Mayor and Carr brought hope but these were matched with the same from the league leaders who hit six trebles in this quarter alone and 14 in the game to take the win 104-91. Sentance had had a truly remarkable game with 40 points including 7 from 9 trebles, a 77% shooting rate but Rockets had given Solent their toughest test of the season to date.

Top scorers were A J Carr with a double double of 28 points and 12 rebounds; Pau Mayor with 13 points including three trebles; Nick Richards with 12 points and 4 steals; Liam Davis with 12 points and 7 rebounds and Ben Dixon with 11 points and 4 assists.

Rockets now travel to Essex on Saturday evening for the first part of a double header weekend before going north to Nottingham Hoods for a National Cup 4th round game.


Date Time League Season
16/11/2019 18:00 NBL Div 1 2019 / 2020


Solent Sports Complex
E Park Terrace, Southampton SO14, UK

Rockets to face league leaders in top of the table clash

Reading Rockets (6-1) will take on reigning NBL Division One champions and current league leaders Solent Kestrels (7-0) on Saturday evening, 6pm tip-off at Solent Sports Complex in what’s billed as a top of the table clash. Rockets extended their winning streak to seven in all competitions and six in league play last weekend when they defeated Leicester Warriors (3-4) by 82 points to 67 to keep up the pace at the top of the division alongside Saturday’s upcoming opponents and Hemel Storm (6-1).

Kestrels have won all of their seven contests so far this season and remain the team to beat having secured the league championship last term including a league double over the Rockets with an 86-75 home win before securing victory in Reading by the narrowest of margins 90-91.

Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane was pleased to see his team overcome a gritty Leicester Warriors outfit and is relishing this weekend’s match up with league leaders Solent Kestrels. He said,

“Sunday’s win against Leicester was a really important one for us as they are a really hard unit to break down with some very good talent. Our performance in the second half was a lot better and I am really pleased with the progression the players are showing in their behaviours and tactics.”

“This weekend’s game promises to be one of our hardest tests yet against a very very impressive Solent outfit. The great thing is we have been ready for every challenge so far this season and, whilst we respect the current league champions, this Saturday will be no different in terms of how we prepare and look to execute.”

“Defensively, we will have to be at a very good standard and commit to every action and if we do this then we can definitely have a very positive performance. For us, it is another stepping stone to be the best we can be but we are certainly relishing the chance to play the top team in the league thus far.”

Rockets will be hoping to go into Saturday’s mouthwatering clash with no injury concerns after American AJ Carr was declared fully fit for last Sunday’s win against Leicester Warriors. Coach Keane will be looking for his first ever win in Solent since taking over the head coaching reigns with the Berkshire outfits last win over their Southampton rivals coming in March 2018 at Rivermead Leisure Complex.

The Reading team now embark on a three game road trip so to follow all the latest news and game updates check in at Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – @rocketsreading or check out the club’s website – www.readingrockets.co.uk

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Match Report Team Birmingham Elite v Reading Rockets -3rd Round Cup match

In the third round of the National Cup away to Birmingham and without A J Carr as Rockets cannot play 2 import players against lower league opposition in the cup, the developing Spaniard Pau Major was given a key role as Head Coach Alan Keane played all his academy players for many minutes with Major as the ‘conductor’ for most of the time after Rockets had stormed the opening period with a game winning 34-7 score.

The first quarter had seen Nick Richards hit 14 personal points including a brace of trebles which Major matched as Ben Dixon began with a block and Matias Boho a hook score. Birmingham Head Coach was not happy with his players or the officials and was given a technical foul mid-way through the opening exchanges. Ed Potter took down his own offensive rebound and when fouled hit both free throws. David Chive did likewise from the penalty stripe and Coach Keane showed his plans by introducing 4 academy players.

The second quarter was a tighter affair as Rockets youngsters fought to retain the supremacy displayed by the team in the first period. This they did, just, by 13-12 as they settled into their roles . Asher Ndah finished a great 5 man offence before then stopping a Birmingham score. Liam Davis was asked to get some exercise and scored with a pair of slam dunks. Rockets had dominated the boards by 29-12 , had made 13 assists and stole the ball on 8 occasions to have a comfortable lead of 47-19 at the interval.

Coach Keane began the third period with his starting five but Birmingham hit the first score. Richards made a great rip to steal the ball and on the Rockets offence Birmingham’s captain D. Penkov and their Head Coach were called again for technical fouls against the officials so both were ejected from the sports hall increasing the pressure on the young Birmingham Elite. Matias Boho was given a long run in this quarter and hit ten personal points including a treble from a Sam Grant assist. Major hit another brace of trebles though it was good to see the hosts stroke their only treble of the game to much applause from both sets of supporters as Elite kept coming and competing for every ball. However a 31-17 period had made the game impossible for them to win as Rockets enjoyed a 78-36 lead as the final period began.

Seven of Rockets players scored in this quarter with four academy players troubling the scorers as Major made a steal, tipped out another Elite offence and took his own tally to his best so far this season of 20 points. Ndah slammed a score after an assist from Boho before he stroked a treble from out wide having taken the defensive rebound moments before which led to Rockets gaining the possession from which he scored. A final period of 23-16 gave Rockets passage to the next round with a 101-52 victory.

Rockets have again been drawn away and will now play either Derbyshire Arrows or Nottingham Hoods on Sun 24th Nov in the fourth round.

Top scorers for Rockets were Pau Major with 20 pts, 4 steals, 4 assist and 3 rebounds with Nick Richards, Matias Boho and Ed Potter hitting 18 pts apiece.


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