Shane Coughlan snatched a sensational late three-pointer as UCC Demons somehow denied UCD Marian a place in the Premier men’s National Cup semi-final despite losing their second leg by 30 points.
UCD Marian had a mountain to climb when trailing by 31 points from last week’s first leg in Cork, but they surged into a 36-13 lead after the opening quarter to set off alarm bells in the Demons camp.
UCD held a commanding 38-point lead with 90 seconds remaining and Demons looked dead and buried. However, captain Shane Coughlan reduced the aggregate deficit to five with a magnificent three- pointer.
Kyle Hosford followed up with a basket, but with six seconds remaining UCD Marian’s Michael Chubb went to the line with his side holding a one-point lead.
Chubb missed the first but made the second. Then, after the ball was inbounded to Shane Coughlan, he was allowed dribble up court as the Marian defenders banked on him taking it close to the basket. However, the Demons ace pulled up and shot a monstrous three-pointer to put his team into the semi-final.
There was a major shock as last year’s beaten finalists UL Eagles were defeated after three periods of extra-time by Dublin Inter.
The Shannonsiders held an 11-point first leg lead but Dublin Inter fought hard for their slender 84-72 win. Killester only had a three-point lead from their first leg with Belfast Star the Clontarf side played controlled basketball as a 24-point contribution from Ciaran Roe helped them run out comfortable 78-61 winners.
DCU Saints were pushed hard before overcoming Templeogue 79-76 and play holders Bord Gáis Neptune in the only second round game on December 7 at Neptune Stadium.
The Leesiders held a 45-point lead over Moycullen before their second leg at the NUIG and again showed their experience to inflict a 92-80 defeat on the westerners.
The biggest shock in the Women’s Premier League occurred at the UL Arena when champions UL Huskies went down to Killester 77-70.
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