Back to back wins for the Rebels Men
Essex Rebels D1 men had a double header this weekend. Saturday they hosted Thames Valley Cavaliers in our Diwali celebration and then Sunday they took on Solent Kestrels in the National Cup.
Saturday’s Diwali celebration saw the Essex Sport Arena pack with Rebels fans enjoying the themed game.
The Rebels started aggressively, attacking the Cavaliers defence and picking up early fast break points forcing them into an early timeout. Essex didn’t let up the whole half and continued with their scoring threat, piling on the pressure and gaining a comfortable lead 8 point lead at half time.
After the half, Thames Valley came out with good intent and the Rebels needed to rally together to regain the momentum of the game. Some great ball movement on the offensive end saw the Rebels get some easy looks at the basket. Going into the final quarter, Essex tightened up even more on their defence and closed up the gaps. Thames valley struggled to score and the Rebels were able to gain further control of the game. Essex finished wining by 20 points, 80-60.
The Rebels were led by Zain Poorman who had 10 points and 9 rebounds whilst Martin, Busumbru, Winter, Chapman and Olarerin all contributed in double digit scoring.
A quick turnaround, bought the Solent Kestrels to Essex in the National Cup competition. Solent are in fine form, currently unbeaten in division 2 and taken down some big teams whilst on this run.
A back and forth affair in the first quarter with both teams trading baskets. Essex were getting stops but weren’t valuing the possession on the offensive end. Solent were able to get out in transition and get easy scores.
The second quarter, Solent stepped up their scoring from the outside, knocking down shots from the perimeter. Rebels still were scoring offensively but struggled to get stops. Going into the half, the Rebels found themselves down by 5.
Essex needed to regroup and step up their defensive efforts. The third quarter saw the Rebels pick up some early steals and breakaway fast break scores forcing Solent into a timeout. Rebels needed to continue with this disruption and execute in the half court to generate a lead.
Going into the final stanza, rebels had a 4 point cushion and were able to hold the kestrels to only 12 points in the fourth. Solid execution and getting to the foul line allowed rebels to control the tempo of the final few minutes. The scoreline finished 91-80.
Zain Poorman & Victor Olarerin again had a great showing with 15 points a piece.
Head Coach Ross Norfolk was pleased with both performances, “it’s always tough playing back to back. We had two great team performances with multiple guys contributing. The guys continue to commit to their roles”.
The Rebels face the unbeaten Reading Rockets away next weekend.