Blue Demons U18s return to the court in style with tournament success

Victory in the Michael Heffernan memorial event at the Parochial Hall was a huge boost
Blue Demons U18s return to the court in style with tournament success

Cork basketball: Blue Demons, winners of the Michael Heffernan Men’s U18 Tournament at the Parochial Hall recently.

Blue Demons 46 Templeogue 32 

BLUE Demons had to produce a magnificent display of basketball to defeat Dublin side Templeogue in the final of the Michael Heffernan Men’s U18 memorial tournament at the Parochial Hall.

A total of 17 teams competed in five groups as three venues were made available to facilitate the number of games.

The Parochial Hall, Neptune Stadium and Fr Mathew’s Arena catered for 47 games on the day and Cork County Board secretary Willie McCarthy paid tribute to all clubs and hosts that ensured a memorable day after 19 months side-lined with Covid.

McCarthy said: “Many thanks to all clubs who participated on a day when many volunteers had to work very hard to ensure a successful day for the sport.” 

Demons had the better start and with James Tobin dominating in the offence court they soon commanded an eight-point lead.

The Dublin side who had defeated every side in the tournament up to the final by 20 points plus were shell-shocked and despite Jason Fazende nailing a late three-pointer Demons commanded a 16-9 lead entering the second quarter.

Defence became a priority for both sides on the resumption and with both sides sharing 20 points Demons still commanded a seven-point interval lead.

On the restart, both teams continued to play stringent defence by Demons continued to execute crucial baskets with Daryl Cuff finishing with a coast to coast basket that increased Demons lead to 36-26 heading into the final quarter.

Coming down the stretch Demons continued to match their opponents' intensity and with MVP Jake Orji playing rigid defence Demons refused to wilt.

In the end, Demons backed by huge support were crowned champions in style.

This season, Demons turned to former Super League stars David Murphy and Carleton Cuff to guide the fortunes of this team and after the final Murphy paid tribute to his players.

“This was all about playing good defence and the players stood up to be counted and at the end of the day winning basketball games is all about playing both ends of the court,” said Murphy.

Murphy, son of the legendary coach Sean, who still assists with the Demons academy, and David is enjoying his present role.

“Coaching is all about having fun and Carleton and I work hard with some committed players and once they don’t lose focus I think we should have a season of fun,” added Murphy.

DEMONS: L Evans, D Cuff, J Orji, D Hannifin, J Rodgers, C Looney, J Robin, E Forde.

TEMPLEOGUE: D Murray, J Finn, J Fazende, D Carbery, H Beashel, J Wright, O Kenny, A Tighe, T Chilkhaajan.

Referees: M Thornhill, A Kearney.

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