In a rematch of a league game a fortnight ago, Moycullen’s Super League side was hoping for a repeat result when taking on Griffith College Templeogue on Saturday. However, this game, a cup quarter-final, was a decidedly different affair.
Two weeks ago in the familiar surrounding of the NUI Galway Kingfisher, Moycullen had ground out an impressive win, mostly as a result of some solid defensive play, but this past Saturday Templeogue flipped the script, progressing to the cup semi-final by 95 - 82.
The Dubliners looked to push the tempo offensively, in the hopes of killing off the game early, but Moycullen did manage to find the answers.
Both sides shot the ball incredibly well during the first half - each side connecting on multiple three-point attempts. Grant Ollsson, who played his best game in a Moycullen uniform so far, carried most of the scoring load for the Connemara men, and at the end of a high-scoring first half, Templeogue had edged ahead by 57 - 50.
In the third quarter, the game began to slow down somewhat. Despite being without big man Jason Killeen, the Dubliners locked down on its defence in the third though, and Moycullen, despite creating some good opportunities, failed to score.
Templeogue had no such problems. They continued their blistering offensive display, knocking down several three-point shots, leaving Moycullen further adrift. Lorcan Murphy, Puff Summers and Stephen James led the charge for the home side, and while Moycullen’s offence also looked quite sharp, with Olsson finishing the game with 34 points, they could not halt the Templeogue onslaught.
Moycullen head coach John Cunningham, though disappointed with the loss, tried to take some positives from the encounter.
"Our best offensive performance of the season, but unfortunately, Templeogue shot the ball equally well in their home gym. Once again, we had a flat spell where we couldn't buy a basket late in the third, and you can't afford that at this level,” he said.
“They had some players who just continued to hit some very tough shots, in spite of our defensive adjustments. We did a lot right in this game, but unfortunately, we're out of the cup,” he added.
This weekend sees Moycullen return to league action when they travel to Kerry for the first time this year for a game against Killorglin.
Moycullen: Grant Olsson (34 ), Paddy Lyons (12 ), Daniel Vila (9 ), Kyle Cunningham (8 ), Dylan Cunningham (7 ), Paul Kelly (6 ), James Conaire (6 ), Joseph Tummon, James Lyons, Dara Kenna, Josh Marvesely. Coach: John Cunningham