2012 National Cup Semi Finals Round-Up

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Updated: January 15, 2012

Demons to face UL in men’s final, while DCU Mercy set to meet UL in women’s final

UCC Demons will meet UL Eagles in the final of the 2012 Men’s SuperLeague National Cup following their emphatic 84-66 win over fierce rivals Bord Gais Neptune in front of a sold out Neptune Stadium on Sunday, while DCU Mercy will face a tough challenge against UL after both sides progressed to the Women’s SuperLeague National Cup Final.

Men’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
Bord Gais Neptune 66 (41) (R Thompson 30, M McGinn 17, G Noonan 14) UCC Demons 84 (45) (S Atupem 20, S Coughlan 17, C Hosford 13)

UCC Demons coach Paul Kelleher praised the endeavour and focus of his players after a resounding 84-66 victory over Cork rivals Bord Gais Neptune. Demons will now face UL Eagles in the final of the Men’s SuperLeague Cup.

A hoarse but clearly elated Kelleher stated at the final whistle “We knew Neptune would be up for this. We knew they would come out blazing at us and they did. We had to stick with them at that stage, but the guys have been practising a lot and have been really focussed on the job. It was a great performance considering the pressure we were under. We’re delighted to be in the final but we know it’s going to be a very tough game against UL.”

Neptune had suffered a tough defeat to their bitter rivals over the Christmas period but came flying out of the blocks here, racing into an 8-1 lead early in the first quarter. Ger Noonan was clearly fired up for this encounter, urging the fans to get behind his side as Neptune stretched the lead to 12-3. Demons responded quickly through Captain Shane Coughlan. Noonan was in dazzling form at the outset, but despite the brighter opening from Neptune, Demons managed to keep the margin to one point, Niall O’ Reilly finding his range from outside, to leave the score at 26-25 at the end of the first quarter.

Demons were a rejuvenated side in the second, dismantling the Neptune attacking threat, while Shane Coughlan and Carlton Cuff contributed some big scores to give them a seven point lead at the midway point in the quarter. Ron Thomson then took up the mantle for Neptune, contributing some vital scores to bring Neptune back to within four. Ciaran O’Sullivan responded with three for Demons. An engrossing first half period ended with little to choose between the two sides, Demons leading 45-41.

Neptune got back on top at the beginning of the third thanks to some fine shooting from Michael McGinn. But Demon’s went on another scoring run while Neptune floundered in their attempts to claw back the gap. Demons held a clear 69-56 advantage heading into the final quarter.

Neptune’s day was quickly turning into a nightmare. Trailing by 17 points, Mark Scannell lost the influential Ron Thomson to an ankle injury and soon afterwards had Ger Noonan fouled out. A visibly injured Thomson returned for the closing stages, but at that point the damage had been done and UCC Demons were on course for a final clash with UL Eagles after a well deserved victory. Final score 84-66.

Men’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
11890 Killester 73 64 (27) (J Turner 18, M Westbrooks 11, P Madsen 11) UL Eagles 75 64(33) (R Taylor 19, J Killeen 18, M Hall 11) OVERTIME

UL Eagles have reached the final of the Men’s SuperLeague National Cup after a ground breaking 75-73 overtime victory over 11890 Killester. In a game which hung in the balance until the very end, it was former Killester coach Mark Keenan, released in the summer having guided Killester to unprecedented success, who will now take his UL side to the National Basketball Arena in two weeks time.

“What a game it had pretty much everything – great defence both ends, some great offensive plays – it looked like we were dead and buried when we went nine down but fair play to the lads they came back. I can’t believe it. I am so proud of them that we hung in there and we showed what we can do defensively and to come back and take the win I am thrilled,” said Keenan.

A blistering first quarter saw UL take the game to the Dublin side, Jason Killeen and Robert Taylor helping them to a 15-10 lead. However Eoin Chubb fired a superb three pointer on the buzzer to bring Killester to within two at the end of the first. (15-13)

The second quarter was similarly close, neither side managing to take charge of proceedings in what was a nip-and-tuck affair. UL slowly managed to eke out a lead and had a 33-27 half time advantage.

Jermaine Turner was instrumental in the Killester fight-back in the third. Killester began to take control. Dramatically, as the game ticked towards the buzzer, Matt Hall shot a huge three to bring UL back to within four. 49-45 with ten minutes left to play.

UL’s tenacity showed no signs of abating, but still Killester appeared the more likely of the two. To their credit, UL didn’t know when to lie down and soon they had the Killester lead down to four. Scott Kinevane levelled the scores with a minute on the clock. Both sides tried to win it late on, but Robert Taylor was short before the buzzer. 64-64. Overtime.

The overtime period was every bit as dramatic, with both sides looking capable of winning. In the end it was left to Taylor, who atoned for his miss in regulation time to secure a memorable win.

Ul were victorious, Keenan ecstatic and the hoodoo had finally been lifted once and for all. Final score 75-73.

Women’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
DCU Mercy 68 (34) (L Peat 14, S Maguire 12, S Woods 8) 11890 Killester 30 (15) (H Fraser 9, A Sullivan 4, L Gray 4)

DCU Saints will meet UL in the final of the Women’s Superleague National Cup final thanks to a resounding 68-30 victory over 11890 Killester. DCU will now face UL in a mouth-watering final as they bid to win their third cup in as many years.

DCU Head Coach Mark Ingle knows UL will pose a much sterner examination of his side at the finals in two weeks time. “The task ahead of us is huge. UL have been the best team in the league all season and we need to find a way now to beat them. People have said that we haven’t been playing well but we are hoping to peak at the end of January, and this result was a step towards that. We have a chance now to go for three in a row, which would be incredible. We are improving and will try to be ready for UL.” Ingle said.

Killester started brightly, but saw their good work undone as the first quarter wore on as Lindsay Peat, Suzanne Maguire and Lisa Palmer began to click into gear. Killester stuck to their task and were still very much in the game, but a huge three from Helena Kenny just before the buzzer gave DCU a 16-9 first quarter lead.

The second quarter was a low scoring affair with DCU slowly building their lead. Killester were finding it almost impossible to break through the DCU rearguard registering just five points in the quarter. A half time lead of 34-15 had DCU firmly in command.

The game lost its competitive edge in the third quarter as DCU rammed home their superiority, and the final score line was an adequate reflection on proceedings, DCU making an emphatic statement before their final appearance with UL.

Women’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
Team Montenotte Hotel Cork 59 (35) (G Dwyer 14, C Rockall 13, N Dwyer 10) UL 71 (31) (R Vanderwal 24, M Fahy 18, A McDermott)

UL reached the final of the Women’s Superleague National Cup finals after eventually shaking off the challenge of Team Montenotte Hotel Cork on a scoreline of 71-59 at The Neptune Stadium.

Their Head Coach James Weldon was delighted to have come through such a tough test. “When you come down to play a great team like Montenotte it’s always going to be difficult. They’re a bit like the Kerry football team. They were going for their sixth cup final in a row. There was no way that they were going to lie down and let us take it,” he said.

Weldon acknowledged that his team had not been at their best on the day, but was pleased by the mental strength of his squad. “It’s a long time since we’ve been in a cup final so there was obviously going to be some nerves there. But the girls didn’t panic. Basketball is a game of runs, and we were patient and got the runs in the final quarter. I’m thrilled for everyone involved in the club,” Weldon added.

Rachel Vanderwal contributed eight as UL surged into a 15-10 lead early on. Montenotte were unbowed, and aided a by the impressive Claire Rockall and Niamh Dwyer closed the gap. UL led 17-15 at the end of the first quarter.

Montenotte began to find their range at the beginning of the second, Amanda O’Regan shooting from outside to give the Cork side the lead for the first time in the game. Thereafter it was an even affair with Montenotte showing impressive spirit in forging a 35-31 half time lead.

The Cork side were succeeding in stemming the threat of Vanderwal, but the Canadian was always a lurking threat. UL, however, possess plenty of attacking talent in their ranks, and Miriam Liston levelled the scores at 43 apiece with three minutes remaining in the quarter. Rachel Clancy repeated the feat moments later as UL finally began to assert themselves on proceedings. UL held a 49-47 lead heading into the final quarter.

Michelle Fahy opened the fourth quarter in miraculous fashion for UL, somehow finding Vanderwal as the ball appeared to be heading out of bounds. That stretched out UL’s lead to four. Two uncharacteristic misses from Clare Rockall kept UL’s lead intact. Unfortunately such incidents often tend to be turning points in a game, and so it proved as UL pulled away in the closing stages.

Weldon’s side now have the opportunity to end a cup drought that stretches back to 2006.

ENDS

NATIONAL CUP 2012 SEMI FINAL RESULTS
Friday, January 13 2012
Under-20 Men’s National Cup Semi Finals
Killester 65 (24) (M Deegan 20, C Roe 19, P Sullivan 10) Tolka Rovers 54 (30) (P Caffery 12, D O’Beirne 11, M Blanchfield 8)

Moycullen 61 (37) (D Costelloe 18, P Lyons 9, A Brady 6) Maree 91 (54)(K Hansberry 28, P Burke 9, C O’Hagan 14)
Saturday, January 14 2012

Parochial Hall
Under-18 Men’s National Cup Semi Finals
Maree 53 (28) (P Burke 17, E Walsh 14, C Shields 9) Dublin Raiders 51 (31) (L Murphy 16, A Bartley 14, B O’Neill 7)

Under-18 Women’s National Cup Semi Finals
Singleton’s Supervalu Brunell 70 (24) (E Thornton 25, M O Leary 16, A Waters 10) Meteors 55 (32) (C Mairtin 11, R Toland Burke 9, S Fanning 8)

Senior Women’s National Cup Semi Finals
Longford Falcons 39 (17) (M Stakelum 18, E Dooley 8, C Kearney 3) Tralee Imperials 70 (30) E Gallagher 20, A Campbell 16, S Mackessy 7)
Scruffy St. Pauls 58 (27) (L Jones 16, M Galwey 13, K Canty 8) Killester 48 (26) (E O’Neill 13, E Glover 7, P Mahon 6, S Kennedy 6)
Under-20 Women’s National Cup Semi Finals
Singleton’s SuperValu Brunell 48 (29)(M O’Leary 16, A Kearney 13, A Waters 5) Tralee Imperials 52 (29)(M Barry 13, D Geaney 12, L Hoffman 9)

WIT Wildcats 45 (22) (C Leavy 13, H Rohan 10, S Deegan, M Stone 7) DCU Mercy 51 (30)(C Foley 14, S McCaffrey 12, R O’Keeffe 10)
Neptune Stadium
Women’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
Team Montenotte Hotel Cork 59 (35) (G Dwyer 14, C Rockall 13, N Dwyer 10) UL 71 (31) (R Vanderwal 24, M Fahy 18, A McDermott)

Men’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
11890 Killester 73 64 (27) (J Turner 18, M Westbrooks 11, P Madsen 11) UL Eagles 75 64(33) (R Taylor 19, J Killeen 18, M Hall 11) AET

Sunday, January 15 2012

Parochial Hall
Under-18 Women’s National Cup Semi Finals
Maree 58 (28) (A O’Reilly 23, A Crowley 12, E Greene 8) Tralee Imperials 66 (31) (L Hoffman 17, A Fitzgerald 13, D Geaney 11)

Under-18 Men’s National Cup Semi Finals
Swords 62(29) (G Reid 13, A Odunga 12, C Dillon 8, P Lacey 8) Templogue 76 (44)(L Thompson 21, B Morrison 19, N Dunne 13)
Neptune Stadium
Senior Men’s National Cup Semi Finals
Senior Men’s National Cup Semi Finals
Thunder 104 (50) (M Westbrook’s 23, G Wong 17, D Courtney 15) TLB Kilkenny 57 (25) (P Morrissey 12, J Butler 10, J O Keeffe 8)
UCD 54 (23) (C Dunne 11, I Monk 10, B Glover 8) Maree 44 (30) (K Hansberry 17, C O’Hagan 10, L Conroy 9)

Women’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
DCU Mercy 68 (34) (L Peat 14, S Maguire 12, S Woods 8) 11890 Killester 30 (15) (H Fraser 9, A Sullivan 4, L Gray 4)

Men’s SuperLeague National Cup Semi Finals
Bord Gais Neptune 66 (41) (R Thompson 30, M McGinn 17, G Noonan 14) UCC Demons 84 (45) (S Atupem 20, S Coughlan 17, C Hosford 13)

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