Moycullen’s preparations for their second home game of the 2012/13 Superleague season received a welcome boost this week with the news that side-lined starters Salva Camps and Cian Nihill are likely to return to action on Saturday.
Both will be needed as they take on Neptune of Cork, a club that can point to more league titles in its history than any other in Ireland, in NUIG’s Kingfisher Arena at 3.45pm.
Although Neptune come to Galway on the back of three straight losses, two of those have come courtesy of a last-second basket, losing to UL Eagles and UCC Demons by one and two points respectively. Their other loss was a respectable six-point defeat to UCD Marian away from home.
“Neptune are a good team,” says Salva Camps, Moycullen’s player/coach this year. “They can score a lot of points and they are very fast up and down the court. If we can slow them down, we have a very good chance because I think we will be able to score on them as well, so Saturday should be a fun game.”
Camps will be hoping NUI Galway will help his team refocus after tough back-to-back losses at the hands of last year’s two league finalists DCU Saints and UL Eagles.
The most recent defeat, last Saturday in Limerick, would not have come as a shock to basketball fans nationwide. Eagles have easily been the most impressive team in the league this year and showed their class against a depleted Moycullen team to earn a 78 - 62 win.
However Moycullen, who travelled with a host of u-20 players, remained within striking distance throughout. Little separated the teams after seven minutes with particularly fine play from Moycullen’s American player Pat Sullivan who led all scorers in the game with 24 points.
Eagles’ size and depth eventually told, taking a 13-point lead into the break, and Moycullen found the task of marshalling 6ft 10 inch centre Jason Killeen particularly difficult and were unable to stop him recording 16 points in the contest.
Moycullen: Pat Sullivan 24, Paul O’Brien 10, Stephen O’Brien 7, Ian Burke 6, Sean Candon 5, James O’Brien 4, Patrick Lyons 2, Nollaig Cunningham 2, Stephen Tummon 2, Dylan Costello.