Local derby will set basketball's Super League alight in Galway

A special sporting occasion takes place this weekend when for the first time two Galway teams will face each other in the top echelons of basketball in Ireland.

Newcomers Maree, back-to-back division one winners, will host their more experienced local rivals SSE Airtricity Moycullen in Calasanctius College on Saturday on the opening weekend of the new Superleague season.

Having won back-to-back division one titles over the past two seasons, the team from south Galway will make their debut against the team from the west, both in competition against 10 of Ireland's top super teams, such as Templeogue, UCC Demons, UCD Marion, Swords Thunder, Belfast Star, and Tralee Warriors.

Moycullen has been boosted with the signing of American Brandon McGuire, and he is expected to make his league debut in Oranmore.

Hailing from Philadelphia, McGuire was a four-year scholarship athlete with division three Moravian College which plays in the Landmark Conference and is based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.

McGuire made his first competitive appearance for the club at the Donie Greene Memorial pre-season tournament, hosted by Maree last weekend, and the club believes Moycullen fans are in for a real treat this year.

Last year McGuire, who plays at four, averaged 18 points, shooting 65 per cent from the field (42 per cent from three-point range ) and 10 rebounds per game.

Moycullen are looking to consolidate last season's form, the highlight of which were their first National Cup semi-final appearance at Super League level where they suffered a narrow defeat to the eventual cup champions, and their home win against the then reigning league champions UCC Demons.

Saturday's match between the two local teams will be a highly competitive campaign opener. Maree, coached by John Finn, last year's division one coach of the year, and boasting three key divison one all stars in player of the year Eoin Rockall, Paulius Peldzius, and Kenneth Hansberry will be keen to open well in front of a home crowd.

Moycullen’s first home game is the following weekend, Saturday, September 23 at 7pm in the Kingfisher when they take on DCU Saints.

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