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Rebels aim to block out Blazers

Published:Thursday | May 24, 2012 | 12:00 AM

Fresh from their surprise victory over defending champions Tivoli Gardens Wizards in their last match, Runnin Rebels will enter today's match against Waterhouse Blazers full of confidence in the FLOW/National Basketball League (NBL).

The game, which will be played at the National Stadium courts, is the first of a double-header and is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m.

In the day's other game at 7:45 p.m., former winners Urban Knights will take on last year's beaten finalists, Majesty Legends.

The Rebels, who are seeking their fifth consecutive victory of the season, are coming off a 74-53 win over Tivoli in their last game. Their record stands at five wins and two losses.

National representatives Kemar McLeish and Javon Bailey, along with Omari Green, are expected to provide the bulk of the scoring for the Pete Matthews-coached Rebels.

The Blazers, who were promoted to the NBL this season, have been playing well to record four wins and two defeats from their six outings.

"We will be going all out for the win," said Matthews. "We are still not playing to our full potential at this point of the season because we started training late and we are still lacking personnel," he said.

Matthews said Saturday's win over Tivoli provided a big morale boost for his team.

"My players are growing in confidence, but there is still a lot work to be done as the season goes on," Matthews said.

Barry Groves, coach of the Blazers, acknowledged they are facing a difficult challenge.

- Robert Bailey

"It is going to be a tough game for us because Rebels have been playing pretty well, and they have also made some improvements to their team this season," said Groves.

"However, we have won our last two games by more than 10 points and so we are hoping to carry this momentum into this game against the Rebels, and hopefully, we can get the victory," said Groves.

The Blazers will be depending heavily on point guard and captain, Kirk Shaw, shooting guard Raymond Layne and centre Brandon Grant to lead their team to victory.

- Robert Bailey