Rockford Riverdawgs semi-pro basketball team returns Oct. 19

By Doug Halberstadt
Sports Columnist

Professional basketball returns to the Rockford area this weekend. The Rockford Riverdawgs tip off their third season at 7 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 19, when they welcome St. Louis onto their new home court at the Patriot’s Gateway Center, 615 S. Fifth St.

The Riverdawgs play a fast-paced, high-powered brand of basketball featuring some of the region’s top players. They are members of the Independent Basketball Association. The league uses a 22-second shot clock instead of the National Basketball Association’s 24-second clock.

Rockford Auburn High School Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach James Fisher will be the Riverdawgs’ bench boss for the second consecutive season. Fisher has more than 20 years of coaching experience.

We are excited for this opportunity to continue to unite professional basketball within the community for our third year,” Fisher said. “Our coaches, players and staff value hard work, determination, discipline and respect. We look forward to working within the community to inspire area youth.”

If you’re unable to attend opening night, the Riverdawgs will suit up again at home the following afternoon (Sunday, Oct. 20) against Kankakee. Game time is 5 p.m.

Adult tickets are $6, students are $3 with an I.D., and children younger than 10 are admitted free.

Following is the opening-night roster for the Riverdawgs:

L.C. Robinson — Rockford Jefferson High School, Florida A&M

Kevin Haas — Rockford Boylan Catholic High School, Rock Valley College

Branden Fisher — Rockford Jefferson High School, Bluefield State

Geoff Wing — Oregon High School, Rockford University

Dewaun Neal — Rockford Auburn High School, Rock Valley College

Maurice Smith — Machesney Park Harlem High School, Rockford University

Brandon Parker — Rockford Jefferson High School, Bellevue University

Nick Trent — Hales Fransican High School, Kendall College

Robert Malone — Stephens High School, Rockford University

Deauntae Tatum — Rockford Auburn High School, Sauk Valley Community College

John Hodges — Clinton High School, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater

Darryl Watkins — Rockford Auburn High School, Rockford University

Kwan Waller — Rockford Auburn High School, Kentucky Wesleyan

Mike Church — Beloit Turner High School, St. Ambrose University

Doug Halberstadt can be reached via e-mail at

From the Oct. 16-22, 2013, issue

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