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Young Cats aim to bring the Thunder

Kobie Reid sinks a floating jumper in the BBA Summer League clash at the Bermuda College. Twisters v Thundercats (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)

The Southampton Thundercats will hope their youthful speed will put them in good shape for the Bermuda Basketball Summer League final against Devonshire Chargers at Somersfield Academy tonight. The opening tip is at 7pm.

Thundercats defeated Hamilton City Twisters 66-41 in the semi-finals at Bermuda College on Monday, with Jason Lowe providing solid experience in the front-court and youngsters Rye Ahronson, Kobie Reid and Mykal Glasgow providing quickness in transition on the wings.

Lowe had plenty of praise for his young stars.

“Those guys are awesome,” he said. “They’re young, they’re the up-and-coming generation.

“I’ve been coaching a lot of those guys since they were 11 and 12 years old and now they’ve come of age. You’ve got Rye Ahronson, who’s away at Valley Forge Academy, Kobe Reid, who’s his team-mate at Valley Forge [Academy in Philadelphia], and then you’ve got Mykal Glasgow, who’s at Thomas College, in Maine.

“We really try to put pressure on the other team, so as soon as that ball comes over half-court, we want to make it as difficult for them as possible. We’ve always got pressure on the ball and then on the inside, any team that comes in there with us, they’ve got to earn it.

“We’re going to play physical, we’re going to play tough, we’re going to try to get rebounds and that’s the way we play defensively; we play hard-nosed defence.”

Ahronson said that his team’s speed and ball movement is key.

“I feel like as a team we play much better when we’re passing the ball around,” he said We lost a bit in the second quarter, but we definitely picked it up when the second half started.”

Ahronson added that his understanding with Reid is also important.

“We’ve been playing together for the past seven or eight years now,” he said. “We definitely have a lot of chemistry together and I’m excited for the final. We can then bring back the chip!

“He’s actually the only player in Bermuda I’ve played eight or nine years with, so it’s been really good and next season we’ll get even more chemistry and next summer we’ll be even better.”

Chargers made hard work of their semi-final win, when they beat Warwick Rimrockers 71-66. Devonshire raced out to a 13-0 lead, but Rimrockers did not give up, despite only suiting up five players, who had to play the full 40 minutes.

Warwick even took the lead in the fourth quarter, but Ian Lim made some big long-range shots down the stretch, including the dagger three when being almost dared to shoot late on which sealed the victory.

“I was trying to let the time run out a little bit, and the shot went in,” Lim said. “We just had to keep playing defence and get back in it that way.”