In the U18 semi-final, the early pace suited Cork side Fr Mathews, but DCU Mercy gradually found their range as four points from Rachel Huijsdens helped them edge into a 33-28 interval lead.
In the second half, DCU increased the pace and with their height posing Mathew’s all sorts of problems they ran out 63-51 winners.
“This was a team performance and we have put a lot of work in for the last five years waiting for this opportunity to come our way,” said DCU coach Joan Philips.
Singleton’s Supervalu Brunell will be DCU’s U18 final opponent following their 74-64 win over Portlaoise Panthers.
The Cork side took control in the second half with Amy Murphy finishing with a game-high 29 points as coach Kieran O’Leary bids to lead his team to their third consecutive title in this grade.
“We will have it all to do as we lost to them earlier in the season but it will be all on the day and hopefully my team will show up,” O’Leary said.
Brunell lost 62-58 to DCU Mercy in the Women’s U20 semi-final after a magnificent game. In a terrific opening quarter DCU Mercy showed lovely touches in the offence court that saw them command a 36-29 interval lead.
Once again the battling qualities of Brunell resurfaced as DCU were hanging on at the finish, much to the relief of coach Mark Ingle.
“We were without our leading player Erica Kennedy Smith but the players stepped it up big time, particularly in the second half when Brunell threatened a run on us,” Ingle said. Killester will be DCU’s opponents in the final after they defeated Liffey Celtics 59-51 in a thrilling encounter.
Trailing 31-24 at the break, Celtics came storming back but missed crucial opportunities at key stages that eventually came back to haunt them. “A lot of my team were playing in their first major game and were a little tentative but I thought we showed maturity coming down the stretch that got us over the line,” said Killester coach Aisling Sullivan.