Despite two excellent performances from Dylan Cunningham who finished with 27 points and Mike Callaghan who had 25 and a massive 21 rebounds SSE Renewables Moycullen were unable to secure the home win against Neptune on Saturday evening in NUIG. Despite the loss, the big home support went home reasonably happy after watching an excellent game of basketball, where SSE Renewables Moycullen pushed their opponents all the way in a game which was in the melting pot right up to midway through the 4th quarter.
Both teams started out the game looking like they couldn’t miss; Neptune from the 3-point line and SSE Renewables from going inside and driving to the basket.
Both teams looked to push hard in transition and it quickly turning into a high tempo, free scoring spectacle much to the delight of the boisterous home support and to the annoyance of the coaches.
By the end of the first quarter SSE Renewables were down 1 point after both teams had shared a massive 63 points between them.
The second was the same as the first; free flowing, high tempo basketball.
With Tomas Gilson controlling the point and Paul O’Brien having his best game from a scoring viewpoint in this year’s campaign there was no let up on the scoring front. Stephen O’Brien, in his return from injury, and Gerald Lyons were also beginning to find their range from the outside and this further helped to open up the Neptune defense, which allowed Callaghan more space inside. After an amazing ¾ court buzzer beater at the end of the half, the gap was 3 points and it was certainly all to play for in the 2nd half.
A poor start to the 3rd quarter saw the gap widen but the reintroduction of Eoghan Maxwell settled the team on defense and with the offense once again clicking SSE Renewables Moycullen went about bridging the gap that had built up. With this renewed focus on defense, the home team had the deficit down to a much more manageable 4 points and it looked like the game would go right down to the wire.
At the start of the fourth it was turning into a case of seeing who would flinch first and unfortunately it was the home team that did after 2 minutes of the 4th quarter. A number of missed opportunities on the offensive end coupled with some costly turnovers led to some easy scores and suddenly from only being 4 down, the gap had jumped to 14. The offensive rhythm that was so good in the first three quarters was gone and with the visitors paying “special attention” to Cunningham & Callaghan the scores dried up.
It was tough luck on SSE Renewables Moycullen in a game where they possibly felt that they could have gotten the win but they must pick themselves up and get ready for the next game in this year’s Premier League. On Saturday they travel to Dublin to play UCD Marian and they will be hoping to overturn the result from October against the Dubliners.
Dylan Cunningham 27, Mike Callaghan 26, Paul O’Brien 11, Stephen O’Brien 9, Gerald Lyons 5, Ian Burke 2, Ronan O’Sullivan 2, Eoghan Maxwell 1, Tomas Gilson, Darragh Mulkerrins, Rory Gilson, Nollaig Cunningham Evan Costelloe, Sean Candon
Categories: Men's Superleague