Ballincollig basketballers are now two wins away from promotion to the top flight

Ballincollig basketballers are now two wins away from promotion to the top flight
Picture Denis Minihane.

Ballincollig 100

Tolka Rovers 61

TRADEHOUSE Central Ballincollig completed their Division 1 regular season games in style with a big win over Dublin side Tolka Rovers at the Ballincollig Community School.

The visitors played solid basketball in the opening exchanges but Ballincollig found their stride and put this game to bed early.

They hit the magical 100-point mark in the closing minutes courtesy of a Colin Murray three-pointer, his second of the game.

For the Ballincollig coach Kieran O’Sullivan this was a solid performance: “I thought as a team we played very well.”

Picture Denis Minihane.
Picture Denis Minihane.

Ballincollig now get ready for their play-off semi-final versus Dublin Lions on Saturday at 4pm at home. If they win they must play a final the following day in Waterford, against the winners of Éanna and Killarney.

The losers of that promotion game will still have another shot at going up to the Super League, in a playoff against Neptune.

Coach O’Sullivan believes Ballincollig will be fully prepared as they bid to end a campaign where they retained the President's Cup on a real high.

“That’s what playing 28 games is all about and I do feel the players are well equipped to face the tough assignments next week. We are mentally focused and our fitness levels are good so no excuses we will simply be ready.”

Tolka coach Emmet Geoghegan only had six players and explained his lack of numbers. “Due to work commitments and illness we were down players and there was little we could have done.

“It’s been a tough campaign for all teams and for a team to lose only two games suggests they are doing something right and in my book they will take some stopping.”

The opening exchanges were very competitive, and, with David O’Beirne posing Ballincollig all sorts of problems, the sides were level at 14 points each in the seventh minute. In the closing minutes, Ciaran O’Sullivan drove his side forward and entered the second quarter with a 26-16 lead.

On the restart, the home side ran riot with Andre Nation producing some wonderful moves and Ciarán O’Sullivan finding his rhythm after being out with a hand injury.

Alex Chandler of Tradehouse Central Ballincollig trying to get past Paul Caffrey. Picture Denis Minihane.
Alex Chandler of Tradehouse Central Ballincollig trying to get past Paul Caffrey. Picture Denis Minihane.

They increased their lead to 19 points at the break and they never looked back, with the likes of Alex Chandler and Colin Murray clocking up some decent minutes from the bench.

Scorers for Tradehouse Central Ballincollig: A Nation 37, C O’Sullivan 21, I McLoughlin 13.

Tolka Rovers: D O’Beirne 18, T Kenny 12, P Caffery 11.

BALLINCOLLIG: C Murray, D Corkery, P McSweeney, A O’Connor, I McLoughlin, A Lordan, C O’Sullivan, S O’Sullivan, S O’Sullivan, D O’Sullivan, Daire O’Sullivan, J Kelly, A Chandler, A Nation, I James.

TOLKA: E Lawless, P Caffery, O O’Reilly, M Murray, A Dolenko, B Owens, S Moore, T Kenny, C Liston, D O’Beirne, M Blanchfield, T Kenny.

Referees: M Thornhill (Cork), P Keohane (Cork).

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