UCC Demons produced the result of the weekend when they toppled league leaders Griffith Swords Thunder 96-95 in an epic Men’s Super League clash at the Mardyke Arena yesterday.
Demons looked home and hosed when holding a six-point lead with 22 seconds remaining, but three-pointers from Charlie Coombes and Isaac Westbrooks tied the game.
In a highly charged game, a verbal outburst by Coombes at referee Martin McGettrick with two seconds remaining saw Demons awarded a technical foul.
Up stepped player-coach Colin O’Reilly who nailed the shot as Demons ran down the clock to run out deserving winners.
It proved to be a special day for American Lehmon Colbert, playing in his first game of the season, his 34 points contribution proving what Demons faithful have been missing.
Colbert said: “It’s great to be back in Cork. For me, it was all about getting a win against possibly the strongest squad in the country.”
Eanna produced another shock when overcoming champions Templeogue 92-86 at Coláiste Eanna.
In a game that was competitive from the tip-off, Eanna held a two-point interval lead.
In the second half, Templeogue threatened a mini- revival and, with Lorcan Murphy finishing with an impressive 37 point tally, they edged into a 66-64 lead entering the final quarter.
Eanna — inspired by Tamron Manning and Neil Lynch — stormed down the stretch to win against all the odds.
Garvey’s Tralee Warriors travelled for a clash with league debutants Maree and came away with a 87-74 win. The Kerry side were always in control and, with Dusan Bogdanovic leading their scoring on 17 points, they secured their second win of the season.
Belfast Star could be the dark horses in the title race, as they travelled to DCU Saints and returned north with a 20-point win, 65-85.
Saints were buoyant last week when defeating Moycullen, but were brought crashing down, much to the delight of the Star coach Darren O’Neill, who said: “We are playing with serious confidence, but the big guns still await us and, hopefully, we will be able to compete with them.”
Killester were another side to suffer Saturday blues when they lost 66-61 to Moycullen at Clontarf.
The return of Cian Nihill to Moycullen from Killester certainly made a difference as he contributed 15 points, with American Brandon McGuire chipping in with 23.
Killester’s plight wasn’t helped when American Royce Williams was carried off with an ankle injury in the second quarter.
Winning coach John Cunningham said: “After losing to DCU we worked on a few negatives that crept into our game and, tonight, to restrict Killester to 61 points on their home court is a testament to the magnificent defence we produced.”
Kubs coach Mark Ingle is still awaiting his first win of the campaign after his side lost 76-58 at home to UCD Marian. This game was settled in the first half when UCD surged into a 19-point interval lead.
Despite battling to the wire Kubs were always playing catch up, with coach Ingle impressed with his side’s attitude. “We could have folded at half-time, but the guys stuck in there and, hopefully we can continue to show the same commitment as the league matures.”
In the only game of the Women’s Super League, it took extra time to separate IT Carlow and NUIG Mystics, with the former running out 73-67 winners.
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