FR Mathews were on the right side of the Women’s Super League Cork derby this time round, defeating Singletons SuperValu Brunell 74-60 in a thriller at home on Saturday evening.
Grainne Dwyer and Shannon Brady were awesome in the contest, combining for 46 points between them, doing the majority of their damage from inside the paint. When these two sides met in the Paudie O’Connor National Cup semi-final last month this was the key factor in the game, as Brady and Dwyer were very much nullified by Maddie Ganser and Linda Rubene of Brunell.
This time however, the Mathews post players won the battle, the southside club running out comfortable victors in the end.
The game was back and forth for the most part, several lead changes making for very entertaining viewing. Amy Murphy was on fire for Brunell, all her 12 points coming from behind the arc, while Niamh Dwyer was excellent as always at the point guard spot.
It was the dominance of the inside players however that allowed Mathews to pull away down the stretch. Having gone into the fourth down two, some impressive team basketball often culminated in a Brady or Dwyer lay-up, something that Tim O’Halloran’s side couldn’t cope with.
“One big thing I liked about today was that we got ten players in again,” James Fleming said after his team’s victory. “It’s great to be winning, but we’re all about building for the future and the young girls in our team - the Anna Lynchs, Amy Corkerys - to give these girls the experience at playing in a Cork derby is what we’re all about.”
Elsewhere in the Women’s Super League Ambassador UCC Glanmire ran out comfortable 81-55 victors at home to IT Carlow Basketball. The Cork side were 26-11 up at the end of the first and a further 17 points ahead at the interval, some incredible shooting from Annaliese Murphy becoming commonplace in Glanmire’s performances as of late. The young guard finished with 20 and is certainly a talent that has Glanmire feeling positive about the future.
In the Men’s Super League both UCC Demons and C&S Neptune faced opposition at the top of the Men’s Super League, both coming close to causing yet another upset in what has been a frantic few weeks in the division.
UCC Demons travelled to Templeogue, and after a strong first half, Templeogue really turned on the style after the break to win 90-77. Lorcan Murphy had a game to remember, dropping 31 points in a performance that included everything from big threes to massive dunks. Colin O’Reilly was top scorer for Demons, but lack of depth cost the northside club down the stretch, as they were unable to cope with the league leaders in the second half.
Back in Cork Neptune did well to stay with Belfast Star all the way to the final quarter, eventually losing 72-92, a scoreline that doesn’t fairly reflect the efforts of the club. Owen Connolly was outstanding for the home side, but any team that can score 13 threes in an away gym is always going to be tough to beat. Mike Davis also dropped 29, allowing Star to run away with the win in the end.
Tradehouse Central Ballincollig really ran up the scoreboard when they hosted LYIT Donegal, emerging 117-61 victors in the contest. Andre Nation had 38 in the game, and while Spencer Williams had 29 for the visitors, the game’s outcome was decided long before the final whistle, Ballincollig leading 65-22 at half-time.
Fr Mathews were unlucky not to get the better of KUBS BC, losing 56-70 at home. Mike McGinn had 13 points, but 27 from Elijah Tillman meant the Dublin outfit could relax in the final few minutes of the game, and they lost out against IT Carlow Basketball on the road on Sunday afternoon in their second game of the weekend, 94-68.