Irish Wheelchair Basketball Cup Finals report
Gerard Larkin Cup Final
Shannonside Stealers from Athlone and Titans Galway contested the afternoons first final, which was the Gerard Larkin Cup. This was a very competitive final with nothing more than a few scores in the difference at any stage of the match. The teams broke for half time with the scores tied at 14 each and scored almost identically in the remaining two quarters. With seconds left Shannonside lead by one however with Titans last attack they converted from play to edge ahead by one. Shannonside did manage to break to the Titans key from the inbound but unfortunately couldn’t muster the score that mattered. Titans Galway were worthy winners of the days first final, the Gerard Larkin Cup.
Tim Creedon was deservedly voted the MVP and captain Cliona Horan accepted the Cup from Louise Larkin. Final score Titans Galway 31 Shannonside Stealers 30
Greene/Walsh Cup Final
The second final of the day, the Greene/Walsh final saw Ballybrack Bulls and Fr Mathews go head to head. During the teams two encounters in the league both sides secured one point wins, so it was all square going into the final. To reach the final Fr. Mathews beat NE Thunder and the Bulls beat the Swifts earlier in the day. The encounter was competitive but Bulls were much more efficient with their shooting and opened a significant gap by the end of the second quarter which Fr Mathews would never close. Jonathan Hayes who had a superb game throughout was selected as the MVP.
Final score Ballybrack Bulls 56 Fr Mathews 24
The Paddy Byrne Cup, the last Cup Final of the day brought the first and second placed teams in the league together. Similar to the previous final, there was nothing between the teams going into the final as they had finished the league on the same points total. NI Knights beat Limerick Scorpions and Killester advanced following their win over Clonaslee in the respective earlier semi finals. NI Knights were aiming to secure the third of three National titles available in 2017 having won the National Cup in January and the League in early May. Following a frantic opening NI Knights edged the first two quarters leading by a single score at the half time break, 33-32. However Killester weren’t going away and took a one point lead going into the final quarter. The final quarter saw NI Knights eventually push ahead with some superb shooting. Following the final whistle Neil Carlisle was presented with the MVP and Aaron Gillen received the Cup as captain to round off a memorable season. Final score NI Knights 75 Killester 65
Credit to Martin Doherty for the photography.