UCC Demons dig out President's Cup victory over Fr Mathew's

Cork basketball powerhouse are among the favourites for National Cup success but next face the impressive Sligo All-Stars
UCC Demons dig out President's Cup victory over Fr Mathew's

Daniel O'Mahony, coach of UCC Demons, talking with his team. Picture: Larry Cummins.

Fr Mathew's 72 UCC Demons 80 

UCC Demons qualified for the semi-final of the President's Cup as they overcame Cork rivals Fr Mathew's in a tense quarter-final clash at the Fr Mathew's Arena.

Demons went into this game as hot favourites but they were brought to the wire by their opponents who more than matched them for long periods of his intriguing tie.

Although Demons coach Danny O’Mahony was pleased with the win he believes his team underachieved on the night.

“I am delighted with the win but this wasn’t a pretty performance and we got to sit down as a team and rectify the negatives from this game,” said O’Mahony.

The Demons chief believes his side will need to improve if they are to be in the mix for silverware.

“When we are in the zone I think we can be a match for most teams in this championship but the reality is that we are at times going away from what we do best and that has to be rectified.” 

The opening quarter was competitive as both sides were shooting the ball exceptionally well but Demons finished with a stunning David Lehane three-pointer that ensured they commanded a 28-23 lead.

On the restart, both teams continued to play hard defence but Demons' Kyle Hosford showed his class with a brace of three-pointers that gave his side an eight-point interval lead.

The half time pep talk did Mathews the world of good as they matched Demons on the restart with American Jonathon Garcia posing them problems with his darting drives to the hoop.

The former Neptune star David Murray is now strutting his skills with Fr Mathew’s and his athleticism helped him nail consecutive baskets that helped reduce the deficit to 62-60 entering the fourth quarter.

Mathews were now on a roll and when Darko Bucan nailed a three with six minutes remaining the home side led by five points.

That’s as good as it got for them as Demons inspired by Tala Fam and Jack O’Leary finished in style that secured a semi-final against Sligo All-Stars.

Top corers for Fr Mathews: J Garcia 20, D Murray 17, J O’Mahony 13.

UCC Demons: T Thiam Fam 25, K Hosford 18, T Christensen 16.

Fr MATHEW'S: J O’Mahony, D Murray, A O’Donovan, H Bevan, D Bucan, S McManus, B Merchant, J Garcia, B O’Neill, L Osborne, A Connolly.

UCC DEMONS: S Manovic, S Carney, R Murphy, K Hosford, D Lehane, T Thiam Fam, K Hosford, M McCarthy, C Looney, C Ryan, K Moynihan, T Christensen.

Referees: M Thornhill (Cork), T Guebali (Dublin).

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