City of Birmingham Rockets’ Men’s First Team lost out to high-flying Manchester Magic at the Manchester Basketball Centre on Saturday evening.

An encouraging Rockets start was followed by a run which saw our hosts open up a ten-point first-quarter lead, which they would gradually extend to put the game out of reach.

Early points from Louis Rogerson-Evans, Vasile Pirvu and Faaris Mughal saw us open up an early lead in a frantic opening few minutes.

The Magic would take a double-digit lead into the end of the first quarter, however, as their quick and efficient ball movement opened up a host of good opportunities – giving Coach Douglas’ side work to do to get back into the contest.

Our hosts would tighten their grip on the game by going on a six-point run to start the second before Michael Price did well to convert from under the basket despite immense Magic pressure to reduce the deficit to twelve.

Faaris Mughal anticipated well to steal the ball and bring it back to a single figure game midway through the second, but the Magic would rally late on to open up an eleven-point halftime lead.

The third saw Manchester open with six straight points, but once again the Rockets refused to lie down – with Elvis Zeiluks converting from range before Matt Parker added a pair of threes.

A late run, which included a buzzer beating three, gave the Magic a 17-point advantage going into the final stretch.

Our hosts would widen the margin further in the final quarter as they claimed the victory.

There is another away game for our men’s side next weekend, as they travel to Bristol Academy Flyers in NBL Men Division Two North action.