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Basketball Ireland review: Killester crowned Premier League champions

Updated: Sunday, 09 Mar 2014 18:49 | Comments

Killester beat Bord Gais Neptune 44-63
Killester beat Bord Gais Neptune 44-63

The wait is finally over for Dublin side Killester who were crowned Men’s Premier League Champions today after their 19-point win over Bord Gais Neptune.

Following their impressive 20-point win on Saturday night against UL Eagles 80-60, the men in orange and black needed to acquire just one point (losing bonus point) in Cork to take the title.

However, they won it in style taking out Bord Gais Neptune 44-63.

This is the eighth time for Killester to claim the top prize in Irish basketball, doing so most recently in 2011.

However, it was not all plain sailing for the northsiders as their head coach Jonathan Grennell explained: “It was a tough game but we always knew that it wasn’t going to be easy. The first half was awful for us but we focused in the second half and pulled through the game to come away with the win.

“This has been an amazing weekend for Killester, having two tough games against UL Eagles and Bord Gais Neptune made it difficult to get over the finish line but we always believed that we could do it.”

“We have been in control of our own destiny this entire season and it was up to us to go and earn this title. I’m lucky with the players I have, they have all been coached so well throughout their careers that they knew what needed to be done to achieve a title like this.

“Everyone wants to be League Champions, the best team in the league with the best record. Going forward now into the Champions Trophy we will continue to stay focused and hope to build on the momentum we have created.”

Meanwhile, C&S UCC Demons were forced to settle for second place on the league table after their victory over SSE Renewables Moycullen, 68-84.

Although they acquired the top spot for the majority of the season, their performance against Killester last weekend and their failure to earn a one point losing bonus cost them the opportunity to take the title to a playoff deciding game.

Bord Gais Neptune failed to come away from their two games this weekend with a win. They lost to UL Eagles on Saturday night 59-71 and again to Killester on Sunday, 44-63.

However, their work throughout the season still saw the Cork side claim third place in the table and a ticket to the playoffs for the Men’s Champions Trophy.

However, DCU Saints’ impressive comeback over Bord Gais Neptune, earned the Dublin side the fourth and final play-off spot as UL Eagles were forced to finish their season early after their loss to Killester on Saturday night, 80-60.

Outside of the top four teams, UCD Marian finished their season with an away win over Templeogue, 84-101.

Both sides have endured difficult patches this year but the experience and skill of UCD proved too much for the newcomers in this final battle.

In the Women’s Premier League, two play-off quarter finals took place. Friday night saw the rivalry of Team Montenotte Hotel Cork and Singleton SuperValu Brunell deepen when the National Cup Champions knocked the young Cork side out of the running to a playoff position, 77-70.

Meanwhile Killester progressed to the next round after their close encounter with WIT Wildcats, 64-61.

The Dublin side pushed had in the final five minutes to get their noses ahead and steal the win without the help of starters Michelle Clarke and Ashling Sullivan. 

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