NUI Galway Mystics have kept their fantastic season going with a dominant division one national cup final win over Griffith College Templeogue at a score of 68 – 35.
The game started off with both teams missing easy opportunities and committing bad turnovers early on and it looked like it was going to be a long day at the office for both teams. However, this was not the case as some stellar scoring from Aoife Ryan and Kara McCleane ballooned the lead to 14 points in favour of the Mystics towards the end of the second half.
The game as a contest was over by the start of the second quarter as Mystics outstanding defence managed to keep Templeogue scoreless from play in the entire first quarter. A feat that has not been matched in this competition this season.
The game became increasingly one sided as it wore on with Mystics keeping up the scoring efficiency on one end and keeping Templeogue out on the other side of the ball. The rebounding from the Mystics was another key reason for this dominant performance as it provided many second chance points for the Galway side and kept pressure on Templeogue.
By halftime the score was 42 – 14 with the Mystics putting in one of their best displays of the season against a team who looked like they could never get going.
In the second half the Mystics showed no mercy to the deflated Templeogue team and continued to grow the sizable lead which by the end of the third quarter was 35 points. It was a side that looked too good to be in division one with some outstanding moments of skill from many different players any of whom could have been awarded MVP of the match, with it ultimately to Courtney Cecere.
In the fourth quarter the Mystics put their foot off the gas, scoring only 6 points in the final quarter, being the only quarter of the game in which Templeogue outscored the Galway side. In the end the 33-point victory was probably a fair reflection of one of the most dominant displays of basketball this side has produced for some time.
NUIG Mystics: Hazel Finn (14), Aoibhinn Walsh (0), Kara McCleane (8), Laura Lopez Morera (0), Alison Blaney (5), Maedhbh O’Brien (4), Áine McDonagh (9), Ava McCleane (0), Courtney Cecere (15), Aoife Ryan (8), Sara Messler (5), Maggie Byrne (0).
Top scorers: NUIG Mystics – Courtney Cecere (15), Hazel Finn (14), Aoife Ryan and Kara McCleane (both 8), Lynn Tunnah (7)