Templeogue Under 20s fend off dogged Sligo for National League Plate
TEMPLEOGUE were made scrap all the way for the Men’s Under 20 National League Plate by a dogged Sligo All-Stars team they eventually beat 82-67 at the National Basketball Arena on Saturday.
Daire Murray, was able to draw on the Super League experience he has garnered with Griffith College Templeogue this season, as he netted 11 points for the Reds, helping them to a 24-20 point lead by the close of the first quarter.
They made a blistering start to the second, Cian Finn’s big three helping to see them move 17 points clear only for Sligo to hit back with a 12-point run that was completed by a Ryan Young basket.
Another of Templeogue’s Super League contingent, Callum McGrail, sank a basket to help leave his side seven points in charge at the halftime recess (45-38).
Sligo reduced their arrears to two with only a couple of minutes remaining in the third quarter, but again the Dubliners opened up a little more daylight on their opponents with four points, including a Daniel Cassidy rebound, in the final minute of that period.
Still Sligo were not about to be shaken off so easily and when Mathew McHale landed a big-three from the corner, a mere point separated the teams with four minutes to go.
But Templeogue demonstrated great resolve and responded with six consecutive points, McGrail a telling factor in this surge and one that would help see him scoop the MVP award.
Donaghy, who emerged the game’s top scorer on 24, served up another three-point jump shot to help reduce the gap to four points.
Yet Murray steadied the ship again for the Reds with a driving lay-up after which they took their chances from the free-throw line to eventually secure the title.