Monday 23 April 2018

First-time finalists to square up

Templeogue’s Jason Killeen. Photo: Brian Lawless / Sportsfile
Templeogue’s Jason Killeen. Photo: Brian Lawless / Sportsfile Newsdesk Newsdesk

Templeogue will meet GCD Swords Thunder in the Hula Hoops Men's National Cup final on January 31 following their semi-final win over Pyrobel Killester in Cork.

The south Dubliners came from 11 points down to maintain their unbeaten streak.

"They had us on the ropes in the first half," admitted Templeogue's Jason Killeen. "We spoke about cleaning up defensively at half time and we just pulled it together."

It will be a first-time appearance for both finalists as Swords pulled off the shock of a busy weekend to defeat reigning champions C&S UCC Demons.

Thunder controlled the game from start to finish to come through 103-82 at the Mardyke Arena.

The women's final will be a repeat of last season's decider, with Team Montenotte Hotel to face Killester on January 31.

Killester's semi-final with Maxol WIT Wildcats wasn't decided until a 5-0 run saw the Dublin side home in the fourth.

"It feels absolutely brilliant," said captain Aisling Sullivan. "To get to a second final and to get another chance to win it this year is something else."

Montenotte had to come from behind to beat a Meteors side who led with a 10-0 run in the second quarter. Aine McKenna finished the game with 18 points and said: "We'd already seen this weekend that anything can happen. We just plugged away and eventually shut down their options."

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