Basketball : National Cup Finals Fail To Disappoint

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Friday night saw one of the greatest if not the greatest Womens Cup final of all time as UL Huskies were defeated in overtime by Team Montenotte Hotel Cork. A sold out crowd at the National Basketball Arena in Tallaght saw defending champions UL defeated as Irish coach James Weldon squared off against another Irish coach in Paul Kelleher. UL were chasing their third straight National Cup but it wasn’t to be although the girls from Limerick have to be praised for their spirited fight back having looked dead and buried at half time in this one.

The Men’s final was never going to outplay the Women’s fixture as UCC Demons comfortably got the better of shock cup finalists Dublin Inter. Inter , who are made up mainly of Lithuanian players , shot well from behind the three point line but after keeping in touch with their Cork counterparts for much of the first quarter they fell away as the game progressed. The game marked a fantastic achievement from Demons captain Shane Coughlin as he collected his fifth National Cup winners medal.

On Saturday, it was the turn of the U18 boys and girls as Templeogue upset the odds by defeating the hotly fancied Letterkenny Blaze giving Ireland U18 captain Sean Flood victory over his international team mates the “Hickey” twins. The girls game was also a spectacle as Glanmire sunk the game winning free throw with just 14 seconds left on the clock.

In the U20 Men’s National Cup final Kubs thumped Neptune by winning out on a scoreline of 75-56. It was proving to be an extremely profitably weekend for Cork and Dublin clubs as it took until Saturday evening for a different county to pick up some honours after Titans over came Team Left Bank Kilkenny in a thrilling three point victory.

Sunday had just the two games to conclude this year’s National Cup Finals. Brunell emerged victorious over Glanmire on this occasion although the 19 point winning margin didn’t reflect Glanmire’s performance. The final game of the weekend saw Portlaoise Panthers play and win their first ever National Cup Final as they toppled Tralee in an exciting conclusion to a great few days of basketball.

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