Wednesday 21 February 2018

Basketball: UCC wary of Moycullen threat

Ruaidhri O'Connor

Ruaidhri O'Connor

Moycullen's recent resurgence will be tested to its limit in Cork tonight as they take on the undefeated Super League leaders UCC Demons at the Mardyke.

The Galway side have never won at the Leeside arena, something that player-coach Salva Camps is hoping to rectify. After a sluggish start to the campaign, the Spaniard has presided over successive victories in recent weeks and his side ran the Demons close when they met on the opening weekend.

The Cork side are likely to be without powerful perimeter scorer Carlton Cuff, who has a shoulder injury, but the re-emergence of Ciaran O'Sullivan – who scored 28 points in last week's victory over Dublin Inter – will help soften the blow.

Demons head coach Paul Kelleher is wary of the challenge Moycullen pose but is confident with the direction his team are headed in.

"A team that wins two overtime games in a row is a team that has no fear and they will certainly be coming into the Mardyke Arena with a lot of confidence," he said. "We have been steadily progressing in recent weeks and our defence last weekend was certainly better."

Champions UL Eagles face a re-match of last year's league final as they travel to the capital to take on DCU Saints on Sunday.

The Limerick side sit in second place, with six wins from seven games and six points ahead of their Dublin rivals. Coach Mark Keenan is expecting a tight contest.

"The two teams will line up pretty much similar to last year's league final and I expect the same tough defensive game again," he said. "We must stay composed on offence and deal well with the Saints' defensive pressure in order to win."

UCD Marian are hoping to get their campaign back on track against fellow strugglers Killester tomorrow.

The southsiders have lost four on the trot, while their northside rivals are three games without a win so both will be targeting their meetings at Belfield this week and the IWA next week for a response. Killester have been boosted by news that shooting guard Robbie Clarke has escaped a ban despite for being ejected from last week's game against UL Eagles.

"We are two teams on bad losing runs and two games against the same team is a great opportunity to get back on track," UCD coach Sasa Punosevac said.

Neptune take on Dublin Inter, while in the Women's Super League UL take their unbeaten run on the road as they take on Brunell in Cork.

Irish Independent

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