Cian Heaphy delivers for Neptune to snatch win over Templeogue

After going down to a late three-pointer a week ago, Neptune came up with the decisive play this time
Cian Heaphy delivers for Neptune to snatch win over Templeogue

Cian Heaphy, Neptune, scores from Stephen James and Vladimir Tokishin, Templeogue. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

C & S Neptune 83 Griffith College Templeogue 80 

A monstrous three-pointer from Cian Heaphy ensured C & S Neptune won this intriguing Men’s Super League clash at the Neptune Stadium.

The Blackpool venue is now looking the place to be for Saturday evening entertainment, as for the second consecutive weekend we saw a game decided in the closing seconds.

On this occasion, Heaphy’s three dropped with 4.4 seconds remaining and despite Templeogue getting a time-out to plan their final shot the Dublin side couldn't force overtime.

Neptune were bitterly disappointed when losing to Killorglin seven days earlier and assistant coach Darren Geaney believes this was just what the doctor ordered.

“The lads have been working hard in training and after a poor start we didn’t panic and in the end I thought Cian’s winning three was just reward for the lads efforts since the season began,” said Geaney.

Puff Summers gave the visitors the perfect start with consecutive baskets despite Neptune playing man-to-man defence.

Roy Downey got Neptune up and running but American Summers wasn’t in the mood for messing about when nailing a long-range three. In the opening five minutes, Templelogue were unstoppable and following a Stephen James basket they raced into a 10-point lead.

In truth, Neptune weren’t at the races at both ends of the court and with three minutes remaining Templeogue led by 13 points following a stunning Lorcan Murphy dunk.

Credit to the home side they battled back and with a minute remaining they managed to reduce the deficit to six points before a James three-pointer stretched it back out to nine. Colin O’Reilly had the final say for the hosts but it was Templeogue who deservedly led 25-18 at the end of the opening quarter.

Heaphy made a stunning move to the hoop on the restart as Neptune needed a good start against their free-scoring opponents. Both teams were intent on running the ball but the home side were back in the game big time in the 14th minute despite trailing 31-26.

 Roy Downey, Neptune, drives at Lorcan Murphy and Jason Killeen, Templeogue, in the Men's Superleague Basketball tie on Saturday night. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Roy Downey, Neptune, drives at Lorcan Murphy and Jason Killeen, Templeogue, in the Men's Superleague Basketball tie on Saturday night. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

After a sloppy period, Neptune were back on parity three minutes later when Gary Walsh and Roy Downey nailed consecutive threes that tied the game at 37 points each.

On the restart, we witnessed superb athleticism with Murphy showing incredible skill with consecutive baskets as Neptune decided a time-out was needed.

Once again Neptune, backed by their fans, responded in style as the closing minutes were played at a frantic pace and after a truly action-packed quarter, the teams were level at 41 points each.

James Hannigan has started the season in good form as he nailed a dagger outside the arc on the restart and the Neptune ace drained a second midway through the quarter that edged his side into a 51-50 lead.

The large attendance witnessed some gripping basketball but to be fair some of the Templeogue rotations were strange.

It was fitting the hard-working Heaphy would nail a late score beyond the arc that helped surge his team into a six-point lead 65-59 lead entering the final quarter.

Coming down the stretch both teams went for the jugular but credit to Neptune player-coach Colin O’Reilly, the way he set his team up in defence ultimately won them the game.

Catalonian Nil Sabata battled like a trojan on the boards and with Roy Downey steady at the point Neptune never lost focus.

The sides were level at 80 points each following a Killeen basket with 24 seconds remaining and in the final possession Man of the Match Heaphy showed his composure with his winning basket that separated two committed sides.

 Miles Washington, Neptune, shoots from Stephen James and Callum McGrail, Templeogue. Picture: Jim Coughlan.
Miles Washington, Neptune, shoots from Stephen James and Callum McGrail, Templeogue. Picture: Jim Coughlan.

Top scorers for C & S Neptune: C Heaphy 21, M Washington 17, N Sabata 13. 

Griffith College Templeogue: J Killeen 24, V Tokishin 17, S James 12.

NEPTUNE: G Walsh, J Hannigan, R Downey, K O’Donoghue, D Varma, C Heaphy, M Washington, N Sabata, C O’Reilly.

TEMPLEOGUE: E Melini, K Arcilla, S James, P Summers, C McGrail, V Toshikin, E Murphy, P Burke, D Murray, M Murphy, J Killeen, N Randolph, L Murphy.

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