Reading Rockets vs Manchester Magic

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Reading Rockets vs Team Newcastle University

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Reading Rockets vs Nottingham Hoods

Before another packed crowd at Rivermead, Rockets secured a fine win against another Championship Play-off contender. Again American shooting guard Trae Pemberton was on fire as he added 26 points to his 30 from last night as both teams were a little less energetic having both played the two joint league leaders the night before. Hoods scored first but that was the only time they led. David Chive replied with a treble and ignited Rockets as captain Danny Carter gave the first of his 4 assists to Pemberton before Sydney Donaldson hit 3 from 4 from the penalty stripe, Chive scored again and Carter spun to help Rockets to an 8 point lead at 12-4. Hoods fought back but a Tanner Kuehn tip in and an Adrian O’Sullivan cross court assist to Chive to hit another treble saw Rockets 21-16 ahead at the first break.

The second quarter was a quieter time for both sides as a little tiredness crept in but A J Carr and Pemberton kept the Rockets scoreboard ticking though Rockets advantage was just 4 at the interval 38-34. Hoods were just one shot off the lead before the last play from which Chive scored on the buzzer. Rockets hit five trebles in the third quarter with Pemberton helping himself to 3 as Carr and Donaldson also stroked one apiece. Carr had upped the tempo after the interval as he fought tenaciously on the floor for possession whilst Donaldson took down a defensive rebound and went coast to coast to score. O’Sullivan gave Arinze Emeka-Anyakwo his first points but a pair of 3 point plays kept Hoods on Rockets tail. The diminutive O’Sullivan stood tall and strong to take a charge and stop the high scoring and big forward Cole Welle from scoring. Carter sent an assist to Pemberton which he repeated to Donaldson a moment later and Rockets had their first double digit lead at 63-52. Hoods hit the final shot to trail by 9, 54-63 as the final quarter beckoned.

Donaldson again took down a defensive rebound and went coast to coast to score, this time drawing a foul and hitting the resultant penalty shot. Ex Rockets Tintin Watts sent a scorcher of a treble from down town but Pemberton replied with a replica shot with the next offense. Rockets enjoyed their biggest lead of 15 points soon after but Hoods went on a 8-0 run just as Rockets supporters were thinking ‘ game over’ . 3 quick points from Donaldson and a Carter rejection saw Rockets regain a double digit advantage with 4 minutes remaining, something they extended to 12 points by the time of the final buzzer at 88-76.

This was another key win for Rockets who stay well in contention for not only a Championship Play-off place but also maybe a home draw if they can reach fourth place in the league.

Top scorers for Rockets were Trae Pemberton with 26 pts., ( giving him a weekend total of 56 pts ) , 7 assists and 5 rebounds with Sydney Donaldson having a double double with 16 pts., and 10 rebounds; A J Carr also with 16 pts., and 5 rebounds and Academy young man making a noise in Div.1 with 10 pts. ,and 3 assists, David Chive.

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READING ROCKETS vs Ipswich

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Reading Rockets vs Team Solent Kestrels

In a pulsating game at Rivermead on Saturday evening, Rockets got to within a whisker of defeating Kestrels,  missing some free throws with less than 10 seconds remaining. Nonetheless this was  most encouraging from Rockets in a game where two players had outstanding  performances namely Kestrels Travis Charles with 29 points and ten rebounds together with Rockets  Trae Pemberton with 30 points , 5 assists, 2 steals and 5 rebounds. ..a pair of gladiators trying to help their team across the winning line.

Kestrels shot off to a 10-2 start but after a time out by Rockets Head Coach Alan Keane, Rockets went on a 21-10 run to take the opening quarter 23-20 with captain Danny Carter scoring 10 points including a brace of trebles and Tanner Kuehn tipping in on the buzzer.  The Mead had an electric atmosphere. Kestrels are not just joint league leaders and title favourites for nothing and responded with a 20-7 run in the second period restricting Rockets to just 16 points too and hitting a buzzer beating treble to take a 43-39 interval advantage to the dressing room.

A Pemberton treble brought the deficit back to a single point with the first offence of the third quarter and soon an A J Carr hook gave Rockets the lead. Another treble from Pemberton extended the advantage before Kestrels tied the game on 49, 51 and 53 prior to a barrage of four trebles as they just couldn’t miss, which saw Rockets 7 points adrift. 14 Pemberton points and a buzzer beating treble from Academy player Arinze Emeka-Anyakwo kept Rockets in the hunt for the victory though 64-69 down as the final stanza began.

17 year old David Chive scored to start this vital period but again four more Kestrels trebles were only answered by a Pemberton one as Kestrels led by 11 points at 79-68 with just over 7 minutes remaining. Sydney Donaldson sent an assist to Pemberton to stroke another treble and scored 4 quick points himself to keep Rockets very much in the hunt. Adrian O’Sullivan sank a treble and hit a free throw as Rockets found themselves 4 points down with 1 min 23 secs on the clock. An exchange of baskets saw Kestrels open up a 5 point lead with 29.3 secs left. Up strolls Pemberton to hit a treble and The Mead was alive with noise and drums. Carter was called for his fifth personal foul so left the court with 21.2 secs to go but Kestrels missed both free throws. Rockets went to the line and unfortunately repeated the lack of success as the tension was at fever pitch. Kestrels hit 1 from 2 from the line to have a 3 point advantage with 6.7 secs left but with just 1.5 secs left Rockets had 2 free throws. The instruction went out that to tie the game Rockets needed to score the first free throw ( which they did ) but purposely miss the second one so Rockets could grab the rebound and score. Unfortunately the ball hit the side of the ring and backboard but instead of falling out dropped in leaving the final score somewhat disappointing at 90-91 but what a great game, what an improved team performance and encouragement as the league season draws to an end of March for Rockets. Don’t miss their remaining home games !!

Top scorers for Rockets were Trae Pemberton with 30 points, 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 2 steals; Danny Carter with 14 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals; A J Carr with 14 points, 7 rebounds and 8 assists; Adrian O’Sullivan with 11 points and 3 assists and Sydney Donaldson with 10 points and 5 rebounds.

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