Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Pint-Sized Players Pack a Punch with Performance

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Pint-Sized Players Pack a Punch with Performance

Article excerpt

Byline: aaron kelly aaron.kelly@capnews.com.au

BASKETBALL: It ain't the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog.

That pretty much sums up Mitch Philp and Lara Napier.

What the talented Rockhampton basketballers lack in size the pair well and truly make up for in other areas on the court.

Philp, 19, and Napier, 17, hit Hegvold Stadium against the Ipswich Force tonight with the Rockhampton Stadium Nightclub Rockets and Hog's Breath Cafe Cyclones chasing five straight wins to start this year's QBL.

Standing at 184cm and 168cm respectively, pint-sized guards Philp and Napier have been the quiet achievers for their Rockets and Cyclones teams.

Philp, who celebrated a state and national championship in his debut season for the Rockets in 2008, tasted his biggest minutes in last weekend's 112-84 win over the Maroochydore Clippers.

The crowd favourite scored seven points and grabbed three rebounds and two steals in his 24 minutes of court time.

Philp can expect more of the same against the Force tonight after starting guard Glenn Scott was yesterday ruled out.

Scott rolled his ankle at training on Thursday night and will miss the match. He is expected to return for next Friday night's home match against Caboolture.

While Rockets coach Neal Tweedy was yesterday keeping his cards close to his chest on Scott's replacement in his starting five, he admitted Philp would be called on to step up again tonight.

"Definitely. Mitch is a guy that's improved and does all the work and he's a guy we're trying to develop," Tweedy said.

The Force arrive in Rockhampton coming off a 120-90 loss to the Northside Wizards, with an equal game-high 31 points from former Rocket Cameron Tragardh doing the damage for the Wizards.

Young guard/forward Ryan Jeffries also hit 31 points for Ipswich while Tweedy said point guard Luke Cann and big man Steven Broom were other Force players to respect tonight. …

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