The Blazers would jump out to an early lead against a senior-laden Red Knights starting lineup. Reading coach Rick Perez called timeout with his team trailing 16-13 with 1:09 remaining in the first quarter. The timeout seemed to ignite the Reading offense, as Gilberto Benz immediately answered the call with a driving layup to pull the Red Knights within a single point, 16-15. The Blazers next possession did not result in a shot, as Red Knight freshman phenom Lonnie Walker intercepted an errant pass and took it the other way for a huge slam, putting the Red Knights on top 17-16 in the closing seconds of the first quarter. The Red Knights, after Walker’s dunk, would never again relinquish the lead.
Reading was able to increase their lead to 4, with a 33-29 lead at the half. Doing the bulk of the scoring for the Red Knights was the senior duo of Gilberto Benz and Israel Abreu, who combined for 22 of the teams 33 points. Meanwhile, leading the way for the opposition was Kenny Worthington, who entered the half with 10 points to pace the Blazers.
Behind a strong defensive effort, the Red Knights would limit the Blazers to just 6 points in the third quarter, while increasing their overall lead to 44-35.
Despite a strong late effort from Kenny Worthington, the Red Knights were able to hold off the Blazers and lay claim to a 63-53 victory.
For Reading, who celebrated senior night, 56 of their 63 points were scored by seniors. Leading the way was Gilberto Benz, who posted a team-high 17 points and 10 rebounds. Israel Abreu (16 points, 10 rebounds) and Meme Burdine (14 points, 11 rebounds) would each add a double-double of their own.
Kenny Worthington scored a game-high 21 points for the Blazers in a losing effort. Levon Kelsey would also score in double figures with 10.
The Red Knights (14-6, 7-2) will be in action again on Saturday when they travel to Liberty (Bethlehem).
The Blazers (11-10, 3-6) will need to pull off an upset against Wilson on Tuesday if they hope to have any chance at a District 3 playoff berth.