Mark Scannell: Incredible squad effort led to Glanmire's 24th national trophy

Glanmire had two talented Americans this season but key to their success was the depth of a group that appeared to be in transition in the offseason
Mark Scannell: Incredible squad effort led to Glanmire's 24th national trophy

Áine Mc Kenna, captain, and Brittany Byrd, MVP, after defeating DCU Mercy in Tallaght. Picture: Moya Nolan

THERE were ecstatic celebrations following The Address UCC Glanmire securing the double following their impressive 88-77 win over DCU Mercy in the Women’s Champions Trophy at the National Basketball Arena.

Incredibly this is the 24th national title Glanmire have won at this level and it was clear to see coach Mark Scannell was elated with his side's performance.

"They got a bit of run on us in the fourth quarter when we lost a bit of size but for me I must pay tribute to players like Simone O’Shea, Annaliese Murphy and Louise Scannell who all made good contributions when they were introduced.” 

Amy Dooley was a raw rookie when she joined Glanmire but under the shrewd coaching of Scannell, she had developed into a powerhouse at the post.

"I thought we were in trouble today when Amy got fouled out as she had a storming game in defence and on the boards for us as well with sealing the deal when picking up some nice tip-ins.

“How that girl is not recognised by the Irish coaching staff beggars belief as she’s a strong 22-year-old with the strength and physique that required at international level." 

Over the years Glanmire have had some quality players and despite losing numerous top-class players coach Scannell has managed to keep rebuilding new squads.

In the last two years, we have won five out of the six major trophies on offer and that’s a great achievement by any standard.

“Last season people said we only won because Claire Melia was in our squad and although she was fabulous we still managed to win the Super League again and retained the Champions Trophy.

“This team have had great camaraderie all season and when you have leaders like Aine McKenna and Claire O’Sullivan you know that the club is in a good place." 

The Address UCC Glanmire coach Mark Scannell speaks to the team. Picture: INPHO/Bryan Keane
The Address UCC Glanmire coach Mark Scannell speaks to the team. Picture: INPHO/Bryan Keane

Claire O’Sullivan who had to overcome many hurdles to get back playing after the birth of her daughter Emma had to attend her twin brother's wedding in Cavan but coach Scannell praised her commitment all season.

After our semi-final win against Waterford Wildcats Claire made a speech but despite her absence, her words inspired many of the squad out there.” 

The performance of Brittany Byrd rightfully earned her the MVP award and coach Scannell was delighted with both of his professionals.

“We were so unlucky this season that we met Trinity Meteors in the cup early doors and regarding Brittany, we have been chasing her for three years but my assistant Ronan O’Sullivan is the man that got the deal over the line.

“We have seen all season how Brittany scores and let’s not forget our second American Khia Rasheed as both have delivered in the majority of big games and we were fortunate to have them.” 

Having a good squad is crucial to winning silverware according to Scannell as he reflected on the season.

“We had various players doing the business all season and yes you need a group with the right attitude that want to play for the team.”

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