Rockets silence Port City with consecutive victories
A STELLAR performance on the court this past weekend against Gladstone appears to have further ignited the fire of the Rockhampton Rockets.
The second-ranked side faced off against long-time rivals Port City Power at Adani Arena in Round 4 of the ConocoPhillips CQ Cup on Saturday night.
It was the second time the squads had gone head-to-head in the space of a week - with the Rockets once again proving too good for the third-place Power.
Despite a relatively level game throughout the opening two quarters, it would be the timely ball skills and strong defence that would hold the Rockets in good stead.
Rockets coach Neal Tweedy said the team had been looking to improve its defence from week-to-week since the season started.
"I saw signs again of improvement, but we were a little disappointing in the first half. We gave up too many points in the first half, more than we wanted," he said.
It was notable contributions from a few star performers throughout the final two quarters which ensured a sizeable 99-75 victory.
"We started to make some shots, we got contributions from Hayden Richardson who sort of carried us in the first half with 27 points," Tweedy said.
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"We also started to get multiple contributions from Leon Christensen who got on fire there in the third quarter, along with Jared Blanchard chipping in as well."
Christensen continued to bring star value to the re-energised squad following a series of three-pointers in the third quarter.
"When we can get some stops consistently it allows us to flow a little bit offensively, so we can run a little bit better and get some open looks," Tweedy said.
Trevor Corrigan also proved an asset with both his offensive and defence work.
"He may be off scoring a lot but he's giving us a defensive presence with his size. He's sort of been our main guys defensively, I feel."
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Tweedy said the Rockets were now focused on next weekend's away game at Bundaberg, keen to add another win to their 3-1 tally.
"Bundaberg have probably been the team that's struggled a little bit throughout the tournament so we're confident - with that away win against Gladstone last week and a home win again this week - that we're carrying some good form."
He added defensive work would again be key, with clean rebounds and steals crucial to their performance.