Ireland 82 Luxembourg 67
A solid display from the Ireland senior men’s team last night saw them off to a winning start in the first of a two-game international friendly series at the Mardyke Arena UCC.
Ireland’s Badmus was the talking point for many as he had the crowd on their feet throughout the game with some superb moves, including two big dunks much to the delight of the crowd.
Indeed, Badmus, Jordan Blount, and Lorcan Murphy put on a showcase of athleticism throughout, working hard under the boards at either end to try and stifle a physical Luxembourg team, while Adrian O’Sullivan impressed on his club’s home court, finishing the game with 12 points after a number of driving moves to the basket.
Indeed, things got off to a great start for the Irish, as they drove into an early 24-18 first quarter lead, with Travis Black impressing with some well-taken scores.
It wasn’t long before Luxembourg clawed back into the game though, and by the midway point of the second quarter, had brought the lead back to just two, before tying the game shortly after.
Scores from Blount and Black nosed Ireland back in front, while hard work on defence from Aidan Quinn, Matt Kelly and Ciaran Roe tried to keep the Luxembourg pressure at bay.
A well-taken jump shot from Keelan Cairns rounded off the scoring for the quarter and Ireland held a 37-34 lead at the break.
The third quarter was still a tight affair, and big scores from the hugely impressive Lorcan Murphy, Adrian O’Sullivan, and Ciaran Roe kept the scoring ticking over for Ireland. A period of intense pressure from Luxembourg followed, but Ireland kept their cool and held a 58-53 lead going into the last.
The last quarter was certainly one that will be remembered by the crowd, with dunks galore from Badmus, super scores from O’Sullivan and a fantastic score from Patrick Lyons to finish off an overall solid performance from the team on the night to win out 82-67.
Game 2 tips off at the Mardyke Arena UCC today at 4pm.
IRELAND: Adrian O’Sullivan (12), Aidan Quinn (3), Lorcan Murphy (14), Paddy Lyons (5), Travis Black (8), Ciaran Roe (c) (10), Matt Kelly, Taiwo Badmus (18), Jordan Blount (10), Keelan Cairns (2), Eoghain Kiernan, Paul Freeman
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