Moycullen dethrone cup kings in convincing fashion

An Cearnog Nua, Moycullen 83

UCD Marian 66

An Cearnog Nua, Moycullen’s excellent form continued when they dethroned last season’s cup winners UCD Marian in convincing fashion at the NUIG Kingfisher Sports Centre on Saturday.

Moycullen established an early 15-point lead, and despite a late Kevin Meaney-led revival from the visitors, they were never threatened.

The win now sets up a mouth-watering home quarter final on December 6 against Lisburn Star, the only team to defeat Moycullen in competitive action this season.

Before that, however, they face two home league games, beginning on Sunday at 3pm in the NUIG Kingfisher Sports Centre against Sligo All Stars. A week later they are at home again, this time to AOL Waterford, while the u-20s, last year’s cup heroes face local rivals Maree, the u-18 cup winners, in a match provisionally scheduled for November 28.

On Saturday Garnett Griffin led the home side’s offence in the first quarter, contributing 11 points and a number of rebounds. Cian Nihill was also on top form as superb defence translated into lots of fast break opportunities. When Dylan Cunningham added to his growing reputation with a pair of baskets, Moycullen had established an unassailable 16-points lead, 27-11.

Moycullen lost a little of their defensive focus and UCD Marian came more into the game, but Nihill connected on a series of three-pointers in quick succession to match UCD Marian’s scoring. Mindaugus Kurcenkovas also contributed off the bench and the half ended with Moycullen extending their lead to 20 points, 52-32.

UCD Marian finally found a way to slow Moycullen’s scoring and set about reducing the deficit, and although Nollaig Cunningham steadied the ship, the gap was back to 16. The Dubliners’ revival continued as they cut the deficit to nine points in the fourth, but Glenn Hynes hit a crunch long-range shot to restore the lead to double figures. This ended the spirited Marian effort and six points from Nihill and a late Paul O’Brien score helped ice the game for the home team.

An Cearnog Nua, Moycullen: Cian Nihill (26 ), Garnett Griffin (17 ), Mindaugus Kurcenkovas (12 ), Nollaig Cunningham (10 ), Dylan Cunningham (4 ), Glenn Hynes (4 ), Paul O’Brien (4 ), James Loughnane (4 ), John Cunningham (2 ), Padraig Cregg, David Lee, James Brophy. Coach: Zbigniew Mardon.

UCD Marian: Jody O’Neill (15 ), Kevin Meaney (14 ), Neil Baynes (13 ), Mate Baneghyi (10 ), Donal O Sullivan (7 ), Ciaran Dunne (5 ), Mike Moore (2 ), Glenn Caulfield, Mark Byrne. Coach: Michael Clancy.

 

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