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Saturday 25 March 2017

Basketball: D'Alessio seeks Demons' fire to keep Star threat at bay

Neil Ahern

UCC Demons' Men's Superleague title is on the line this weekend as they face Belfast Star in the quarter-finals of the play-off stage.

The reigning champions failed to secure a semi-final spot as they were beaten to the Southern Conference's top two spots by UL Eagles and Neptune respectively.

And while the Cork side have already beaten Star three times this season -- their latest as recently as last weekend -- Demons head coach Luke D'Alessio is taking nothing for granted.

"Even though we won the game last Sunday, we'll need to play even better to win next weekend, Star are a very tough team and will relish a home quarter-final," he said. "We need to continue to play with the passion and commitment I have seen in the past few games."

Doubt

Fergal Toner and Scott Summersgill are a doubt for the Northern side through injury.

DCU Saints, meanwhile, face Neptune in the other quarter-final tomorrow and Emmet Donnelly, guard for the Dubliners, knows they have a huge task ahead.

"Considering the resources of both clubs and with Neptune having home court advantage it is truly a David-and-Goliath challenge," said Donnelly.

"However, we believe that if we can emulate our performances of our last couple of games we will give ourselves a great chance."

Saints have their selection problems with Michael Chubb facing a fitness race after his recent ankle injury, while Martins Provizors is expected to miss out due to family commitments.

Irish Independent

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