A fired-up Templeogue employed the old-fashioned virtues of good hustle and aggressive rebounding to bounce fancied Killorglin out of contention for the Men’s U18 National Cup.
Jason Killeen’s side had plenty of outside shooting options too, and a third quarter three party catapulted them out of Killorglin’s range yesterday and into a final in three weeks against defending champions Neptune, who eased past Ongar Chasers 75-48.
Tom Phelan, Jack Walsh and Matthew Harper all hit threes as the Dublin teenagers broke open a 30-30 half time tie.
They were still tied at 44 when Ewan Weldon connected for Killorglin, but Templeogue were dominating on both boards, and had the Kerry side clearly rattled.
Guard Walsh drained a three for the winners, and Harper followed suit as Killeen’s youngsters suddenly made their dominance count on the scoreboard.
A three from David McCarthy for Killorglin kept them engaged but they were out-hustled inside with Aston Kisuka driving for two more. 70-57 with 4.17 remaining. Declan Wall’s side couldn’t even get some late momentum, and Templeogue added to their senior semi success by closing it out 72-61.
Meanwhile, Neptune made it a third U18 Cup final on the bounce with a convincing 75-48 win over Blanchardstown’s Ongar Chasers.
The Cork lads were led by 16-point Darragh O’Sullivan and David Murray, with O’Sullivan hitting two consecutive three-pointers and controlling the offence to guide his team to lead 25- 32 at the half.
They stretched their advantage to 52-34 heading down the stretch, bringing physicality to their rebounding at both ends.
Sanmi Fajana did his best to bring Ongar Chasers back into the game with some nice scores but Neptune saw the game out with consummate ease. Added coach Paul Kelleher: “in some ways, the scoreline doesn’t even reflect how dominant we were in that game, ow well we played.
Top scorers for Templeogue:
Aston Kisuka (14), Tom Phelan (13), Matthew Harper (11) Killorglin top scorers: David McCarthy (14), Liam Croke (13), Eoin O’Sullivan and Ewan Weldon (11 each)
Top scorers for Neptune:
Darragh O’Sullivan (16), David Murray (16), Scott Hannigan (13) Ongar Chasers top scorers: Finn Hughes (17), Sanmi Fajana (15), Conor Thornton (7).
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