Ballincollig basketball club lose National Cup battle on the road to Tralee Warriors

Tradehouse Central Ballincollig got ahead going into the fourth quarter but didn't have enough to upset the hosts
Ballincollig basketball club lose National Cup battle on the road to Tralee Warriors

Tradehouse Central Ballincollig's Milorad Sedlarevic on the move away to Tralee Warriors in the National Cup.

Tralee Warriors 74 Tradehouse Central Ballincollig 66

A SOLID fourth quarter from Tralee Warriors ensured they saw off the brave challenge of Tradehouse Central Ballincollig in a pulsating Pat Duffy Men’s National Cup first round clash at the Tralee Sports complex.

In a game where Ballincollig started slow, they managed to battle back to lead by the minimum going into the final quarter before the Kerry side found another gear to secure the all-important win.

The home side were quickest out of the blocks and with American Aaron Calixte giving an early indication of his shooting skills they soon commanded an eight-point lead.

Ballincollig were struggling at both ends of the floor and despite Padraig Lucey banking a late basket they trailed 23-10 entering the second quarter.

Credit to Ballincollig they improved big time on the resumption and with Andre Nation finding his range they were soon posing the Tralee side problems.

Nikola Roso, Tralee Warriors, battles Adrian O'Sullivan, Tradehouse Central Ballincollig.
Nikola Roso, Tralee Warriors, battles Adrian O'Sullivan, Tradehouse Central Ballincollig.

The home side backed by their fanatical supporters responded and the three-point shooting of Daniel Jokubaitis broke the hearts of Ballincollig as they still trailed by 13 points at the break 43-30.

In fairness, Ballincollig refused to lie down and they put in an incredible shift at both ends of the floor in the third quarter that ensured they were right back in the mix.

Some of the defence played by Ballincollig was from the top drawer as they restricted their opponents to a mere eight points.

Adrian O’Sullivan found his form and with Milorad Sedlarevic nailing crucial baskets the Cork side led by the minimum 52-51 entering the crucial final quarter.

Coming down the stretch the Warriors, led by Kieran Donaghy, took total control as Ballincollig ran into foul trouble.

In the end, the Warriors were deserving winners much to the disappointment of the Ballincollig coach Kieran O’Sullivan.

Andre Nation in action.
Andre Nation in action.

“We started too slow that culminated in us putting extra energy in during the third quarter and in the end they had too much for us coming down the stretch,” said O’Sullivan.

“We gave it our best shot but it wasn’t good enough against a strong side and all we can do is wish them well for the remainder of the championship.” 

Scorers for Tralee Warriors: A Calixte 20, N Roso 16, D Jokubaitis 14.

Tradehouse Central Ballincollig: A Nation 18, M Sedlarevic 14, A O’Sullivan 14.

WARRIORS: D O’Hanlon, A Calixte, F O’Sullivan, J Fernane, S Bowler, P Felening, B Cotton, K Crowe, D Jakubaitis, A Fleming, N Roso, R Elksnis.

BALLINCOLLIG: A O’Sullivan, D Corkery, A Nation, A O’Connor, C O’Connell, P Cami Galera, C O’Sullivan, B Dounala, C Blount, D O’Sullivan, P Lucey, J Kelly, M Sedlarevic, K Cairns.

Referees: J Dooley (Portlaoise), M McGettrick (Dublin), P J Coughlan (Cork).

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