Imperials record win in Portlaoise
League Division One
Tralee Imperials 68
Last Saturday Tralee Imperials played their final away game of the season when they made the trip to Portlaoise to play against second in the table Panthers.
With the home side not having lost a home game all season Imperials knew that this was going to be a serious battle. With that in mind they started the game at an incredibly quick pace. Meave Barry opened the scoring and Sinead Mackessy and Emma Sherwood drove Tralee to an impressive 20-7 lead at the end of the first quarter.
The defensive pressure was very good and this lead to some easy baskets on the fast break. In the second quarter Lisa Brennan and Amy Fitzgerald kept the momentum going with some great baskets. For the home side Meave O'Sullivan was trying her hardest to keep Portlaoise in touch but with Clare Brennan adding a basket from a back door cut and Linda Raymond hitting a three pointer on the buzzer of half time Imperials went in at the break with a healthy lead 42-19.
The home side were always going to respond to try and protect their unbeaten home record and in the second half they duly delivered. Sinead Melia and Catherine O'Sullivan started to eat in to Imperials advantage. Not to be fazed Imperials responded with another Raymond three pointer. Deirdre Kearney added two free throws and Lisa Brennan added 5 straight points to increase Imperials lead to 56-30 going in to the last quarter.
The home side tried their best to cut the deficit but with an Aisling O'Mahony basket and some in credible rebounding from Fitzgerald Imperials were not to be denied. Meave Barry finished off the scoring that she had stated at the beginning of the game securing an impressive Imperials victory.
Tralee Imperials: Sinead Mackessy 15, Emma Sherwood 14, Lisa Brennan 13, Linda Raymond 9, Amy Fitzgerald 7, Deirdre Kearney 6, Meave Barry 4, Aisling O Mahony 2 and Clare Brennan 2.
Imperials now finish the season with three home games in a row, starting with a repeat of the National Cup final against Drimnagh Dynamos this Saturday at 4.30pm in Mercy Mounthawk.