Corkery is Ballincollig Basketball Club's ultimate unsung hero

Corkery is Ballincollig Basketball Club's ultimate unsung hero
Picture: Eddie O'Hare

IF Ian McLoughlin was a worthy MVP after Tradehouse Central Ballincollig’s dogged display saw them retain the President’s Cup on Saturday afternoon, then Dylan Corkery was just behind him.

McLoughlin buried two stunning three-pointers to give the favourites the lead in the fourth quarter but no one epitomised the Collig’s work-ethic and drive better than Corkery. He had 10 points but more influentially 10 rebounds, five steals and four assists.

Once Ballincollig wrestled the lead from Tolka Rovers the tenacity of Corkery along with the power of American Andre Nation, who had 18 rebounds and four blocks, ensured the cup was coming back to the Village again. Tolka’s Alex Dolenko was held to just four points. Collig weren’t as slick as they had been in the league this season but like true champions, Kieran O’Sullivan’s charges found a way to win.

Ballincollig Tradehouse Central Ballincollig supporters celebrate the win. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Ballincollig Tradehouse Central Ballincollig supporters celebrate the win. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

UL student Corkery has been with Ballincollig since he was 10 and while there were plenty of thrilling games coming through the underage ranks he never imagined they’d be so successful in the National League.

“Being honest we were just hoping to be competitive, so to get up to Tallaght two years in a row and win these cups is incredible, it’s a dream come true. We saw how much the supporters enjoyed it at the end there. It’s special.”

The native of Tower relishes the grittier side of the sport.

Dylan Corkery takes on Kubs' Marcus Black. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Dylan Corkery takes on Kubs' Marcus Black. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

“I like to score baskets, everyone does, but when you’ve players like Andre, McLoughlin and Ciarán O’Sullivan you’re not worried about your own shots. I want to win and if that means I’ve to contribute defensively then that’s what I’ll do. I love two-way players in NBA, Paul George and Kawhi Leonard, and I’m always trying to improve.”

Corkery feels there is more to come from the team and the club in general.

“The aim is get promoted to the Super League so we need to refocus now, we had a couple of losses in the last few weeks so we’ll have to drive it on again.”

Johnny Down’s U18 side have a Shield final next weekend which also offers Ballincollig another chance to secure a national title.

Nicky, Eoghan and Shona Bohane after the win on Saturday. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Nicky, Eoghan and Shona Bohane after the win on Saturday. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

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