Reading Rockets battle Essex Rebels in pre-season action – Reading Today Online

Elijah Maynard of Reading Rockets. Essex Rebels VS Reading Rockets in preseason action!

Reading Rockets travelled to their second away game of their three game pre-season preparation with a trip to Colchester where they played Essex Rebels.

This followed a trip to Guildford where they were hosted by BBL outfit Surrey Scorchers coupled to their only home game against Team USA Select.

Essex Rebels v Reading Rockets Pictures: Luke Simcock

An overwhelming victory in front of a sellout crowd at Loddon Valley was followed with tight affairs against Scorchers and Rebels where they lost by four and six points respectively.

Captain Lewis Champion showed his defensive qualities by taking a charge before returning Fin Porter did what he does best by scoring inside. When Zack Powell hit a treble off another outstanding team move, Rockets were clearly in charge.

A Clarke steal and coast to coast coupled to a Porter sin score saw Rockets with a double digit lead.

Clarke impressed from the free throw line with 3 from 3 as Head Coach Samit Nuruzade played all his team and Rockets went to the first break 21-13 ahead.

Young Millbank and a new senior Isaac Round hit back to back trebles early in the second quarter but Rebels now found their feet and the game was now more competitive.

Rockets stayed ahead to edge the first half 38-37 thanks mainly to a brace of trebles from Powell and Clarke.

The third period saw the game tied for the first time on 44 each but the first Rebels treble saw them capture the advantage.

Rockets missed some lay-ups and shots and found themselves on the wrong side of a 51-58 scoreline as the final quarter beckoned.

A Round treble reduced the deficit to two points before a Clarke drive saw Rockets to a single point deficit at 60-61. Free throw conversions took Rebels ahead again by 69-62 before they sunk a treble to have a 10 point advantage with just 2.37 mins left.

Powell took to the court and hit a treble before he took down an defensive rebound and passed to Round to score before hitting a pair of free throws to take Rockets to 71-74 with 8.4 secs remaining.

With Rebels having possession, Rockets had to foul and hope the player would miss, giving Rockets a chance to take the game to extra time. However he hit both and Rebels took the win 76-71.

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