Saturday 20 January 2018

Basketball: Keenan hopes Cup heartache will inspire UL to league glory

Ruaidhri O'Connor

Ruaidhri O'Connor

HAVING lost out on cup glory last weekend, UL Eagles will be hoping to take a massive step towards a league title in Cork on Sunday.

The SuperLeague champions lost their Cup crown to Neptune last Friday night and now must pick themselves up for the biggest game of the season against second-placed UCC Demons. Neither side will admit it, but this could prove to be a title decider.

UL lead the way, three points clear of Demons and, although Neptune remain in the hunt, it looks like being between these two.

Eagles coach Mark Keenan wants his side to respond to last weekend's disappointment and get back to winning ways, saying: "This is a crucial game for both teams. It really is a must-win.

"We need to prove to ourselves that we can play better than last weekend in the Cup final, so it's game on for us."

UCC Demons coach Paul Kelleher played down the game's significance, however, and said that the title has a long way to go yet.

"Each team this year has been capable of beating any of the others. There will be another month of games and to think that the winner on Sunday has the league is disrespectful to all the other teams," he said.

Cup winners Neptune will be keeping a close eye on proceedings and will be hoping to take advantage when they take on DCU Saints tomorrow.

"The one thing this team has is hunger and depth. A few seasons ago UCD Marian won the Cup, then didn't win a league game after that. That definitely won't be happening to us," said coach Mark Scannell.

Tonight, Dublin Inter host Killester, while Moycullen take on UCD Marian tomorrow.

In the Women's Superleague, Rockets take on Brunell as the hunt for the play-off spots heats up, with Meteors facing Killester.

Irish Independent

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