2018 – ROCKETS SHOT DOWN BY LEOPARDS
Leopards will go into the Christmas break on a high after beating old rivals Reading Rockets 101-90 at Rivermead, on Sunday .
In contrast to their defeat at Thames Valley Cavaliers, Leopards led for almost the whole game at Reading as they completed a third victory of the season against the Rockets .
Treys from Newman and Wood helped Leopards start strongly as they rushed into a 16-4 lead and although Trae Pemberton dragged his team back into the game, Newman’s jump shot sent his team into the first break with a 23-18 lead .
A barrage of treys from the hosts saw them tie the game at 39 with four and a half minutes left in the first half, but as Rockets continued to suffer from foul trouble Leopards went on a 10-0 run, and Newman again beat the buzzer to give his side a 56-45 lead going into the locker room .
A switch to a zone defence by the hosts saw Leopards struggle in the first four minutes of the second half as Rockets went on an 11-3 run, with only Wood’s trey troubling the scorer .
The game was nip and tuck for the rest of the quarter despite Sandiford being forced to sit down after collecting his fourth foul, but Newman again came up good as he sunk a trey to beat the buzzer and send his side into the final break with a 74-71 lead .
Hodges kept his side ahead in the early stages of the fourth period, and Sandiford returned to the action with an and-one to make it a seven point game .
Mascall-Wright kept his side ahead from the Land of Plenty and he repeated the act to effectively seal the win before Rory Winter broke the century mark with a trey to wrap things up,
Hodges led the way with his second double-double of the weekend with 24 points and 16 rebounds, with Newman matching his scoring and adding seven assists, four steals and three boards . Mascall-Wright added 23 points, while Sandiford finished with 18 points.
Leopards’ inside scoring proved to be key as they hit an impressive 74 percent of their two-point efforts .
Reading’s American pair Pemberton and AJ Carr led the way with 25 and 22 points respectively.