Rockets defeat Phoenix Power in close clash
DESPITE tipping off the season with an injured player and a loss to the Rockhampton Rockets, Phoenix Gladstone Power men proved they were still a force to be reckoned with in the Queensland Basketball League.
In Saturday's close clash the Rockets overcame Gladstone to win 97-87, at Gladstone's Kev Broome Stadium.
And on his official return to the court after scoring 15points within eight minutes, Blair Smith was taken to hospital for a knee injury.
Coach Dale Iwanicki yesterday said the injury wasn't as bad as first expected and Smith should be back on the court in a matter of weeks.
Although wasn't the start to the season Iwanicki was hoping for, he said the Power will be taking many positives out of last night's efforts.
"We played really well. It was a good effort all around, it really only came down to four plays," he said.
Rockhampton got out to an eight point lead in the first quarter before dropping behind in the second.
The scores were locked at 73-73 by three-quarter time, and the Rockets went on to build a nice lead in the fourth and final quarter to win by 10 points.
One of the Power's newest recruits, Justin Baker dominated play in his debut, scoring 25 points, and gaining 20 rebounds.
"It's an indicator of how well he will fit in this year," he said.
"It's going to be a great advantage for us to have a player like Justin."
Next weekend the Power will hit the road to play Bundaberg on Friday night and Brisbane on Saturday.
Iwanicki said the power will be working hard in training this week in preparation.
2013 QLD Basketball League
Phoenix Gladstone Power Men v Rockhampton Rockets at Kev Broome Stadium: 97-87