National League

Nov 10 2022

The Address UCC Glanmire to return to playing with 'freedom' again; National League 'week 6' preview

The Address UCC Glanmire head coach Mark Scannell is asking his side to ‘start playing with freedom and enjoyment’ again, as they look to bounce back to winning ways in the Super League.

The defending league and cup champions were knocked out of the Paudie O’Connor National Cup at the first hurdle by Trinity Meteors and ahead of a meeting with i3PT Fr.Mathews, Scannell is demanding a response;

“It’s good to get back to playing a game in the league after a disappointing cup defeat last weekend. We will have to improve in many aspects of our play if we are to get a result against Fr.Mathews, but the most important thing is to start playing again with the freedom and the enjoyment that we normally do. Both teams will know each other well so little things will be important especially in a local derby,” said Scannell.

Niamh Dwyer, head coach of i3PT Fr.Mathews is embracing the challenge:

"We are looking forward to the taking on The Address UCC Glanmire in the Maradyke Arena next Sunday in the Cork derby. We have prepared well and ready to get ready to back on the floor after the break last weekend," added Dwyer.  

There’s a clash between two 4-1 teams, Trinity Meteors and Waterford Wildcats with a chance at establishing a foothold in the upper echelons of the league on the line. Trinity Meteors head coach Niall Berry is praising the competitive nature of the Super League.

“There’s really no rest in this league. So many teams can compete at the top and Waterford Wildcats are no doubt one of those teams that could inevitably win it all. We’ll have it all to do to put in a performance and compete with their physicality. Both teams have had some good wins in the last few weeks, so we are very excited about the match up,” said Trinity Meteors head coach Niall Berry.

“This weekend we face a tough Trinity Meteors team who have shown in recent weeks that they will be challenging for trophies come the end of the season. We understand the challenge ahead and know that any mistakes will be severely punished. Playing against one of the favourites is always exciting and we are really looking forward to it,” added his counterpart in Waterford, Tommy O’Mahony.

DCU Mercy are on a four-game unbeaten run and they could extend that with a victory on the road against University of Galway Mystics. ‘It’s always a good contest and this weekend should be no different,’ said DCU Mercy head coach Mark Ingle. ‘We are really looking forward to it.’

University of Galway Mystics are dealing with a spathe of injuries, but their head coach Paul O’Brien isn’t going to use that as an excuse.

"It’s giving our younger players a chance to play at this level and we feel we have been improving each week. Our defense has gotten much better. We are just struggling to find a way to make shots even though we feel we have been getting good looks."

Singleton SuperValu Brunell will be on a revenge mission against Leixlip Amenities Liffey Celtics, the team who ended their National Cup hopes in the opening round. The Kildare side are looking to kickstart their Super League season following a 1-4 start.

“We’re expecting a tough test this weekend. Singleton SuperValu Brunell are so good at home and having got the cup win last weekend, we know they’ll be out for some revenge. Edel Thornton was exceptional that day. We know coming into this week, we need to do a better job of trying to slow her down,” said head coach Karl Kilbride.

The final game in ‘Week 6’ sees Killester make the trip to Jordanstown Sports Village to take on Ulster University.

Defending Super League winners Garvey’s Tralee Warriors head coach John Dowling is accustomed to dealing with setbacks this season, but admits he is ‘really happy’ with the reaction he has been getting from his charges. 

"We have been going through a really tough time, but I am really happy how this group have stuck together come back every week worked hard and give everything they have," added Dowling.

They’re in Galway to play Moycullen, who are yet to find a win this campaign. Their head coach John Cunningham believes that a couple of players returning from injury will help them turn the corner:

"Hats off to the players. They’re knuckling down and working hard every night to start bridging the gap. Grant Olsson returning last weekend gave us a lift and we felt we had solid spells where we played like a Super League team. Unfortunately, at the moment, the good spells are too short and the bad spells are too bad. Having a home game is a help as we have a loyal support base who realize where we’re at and are happy to get behind us, good or bad," said Cunningham.

Architects of an Pat Duffy Cup upset, DBS Éanna will want to back up that performance with another statement win over Energywise Ireland Neptune on the road this weekend.

“Energywise Ireland Neptune have kicked on from a good season last term. They have recruited really well and Nil Sabata is in fine form. We've practiced well and got good results in most of our match ups so far,I'm excited to play in Neptune Stadium again and I know Sean is too! He won a lot of trophies during his underage career there.” quipped head coach Darren McGovern.

There’s a marquee matchup in the Southern Conference, University of Galway Maree hit the road to take on Emporium Cork Basketball, with both entering with a 4-1 record.

“All our focus is about preparing physically and mentally to be in the best spot to challenge them” said Charlie Crowley, head coach University of Galway Maree.

Belfast Star are other remaining team with just a single loss to their name and they make the trip down the M1 to take on a Killester team who also have a winning record through five weeks.

“If it's anything like the game in the IWA last year, it will be tough on the coaches. Both teams tried to lose but thankfully we came out on top. It's one of the toughest places to win in the country. Super coach, very talented and experienced group of players. This will be a great test for us,” said Belfast Star head coach Adrian Fulton.

His sentiments were echoed by Killester head coach Brian O’Malley. “A weekend off always presents a fine balance between getting the rest in and not losing sharpness. Belfast Star have been in great form and present a massive challenge. They got the better of us last year in both games so hopefully we can turn the tables this year.”

Elsewhere this weekend, recently crowned October Super League ‘Coach of The Month’ Shane O’Meara of EJ Sligo All-Stars wants a complete reversal of the performance which saw his side dumped out of the cup by this week's opponents:

“After a dismal display last week, we are hoping for a reaction from the team. Bright St.Vincent's have been steady all year although their league results don't reflect their ability so we are expecting another tough game.”

The man on the opposing bench, Josko Srzic is looking forward to the back to back dynamic:

“It’s always extra challenging, but also interesting to play same team twice in one week. We have not performed close to the same level in away games so far in the league and we have to be able to close that gap. We have to bring similar mentality as last weekend, with maximum concentration and be ready to play a physical game that I am expecting in Sligo.”

There’s a Dublin derby between UCD Marian and Griffith College Templeogue, with Mark Keenan under no illusions about the challenge ahead of his team against the college outfit. 

“UCD Marian are always a tough test at home. We will need to play for the full 40 minutes on Saturday night. Playing for 30 minutes won’t get the job done against opposition like this.”

Sunday’s solitary game brings together two form teams in the shape of UCC Demons and Flexachem KCYMS.

“UCC Demons have picked up two big wins in the league recently and look a strong unit with some nice overseas players contributing big for them. I feel we have been playing well and getting better each week as a team but haven't got the rub of the green in the close games. So, this week at practice it's looking to find a way to turn those tight games down the stretch into wins and build from there. Hopefully we can get a performance that gives us a chance to do this come Sunday,” said Flexachem KCYMS head coach Declan Wall. 

Daniel O'Mahony, head coach of UCC Demons added:

“Up next we welcome Killorglin who like ourselves narrowly lost in the first round of the Cup and will be looking to bounce back quickly, Killorglin are a strong outfit a starting 5 made up of 5 professional players all capable of scoring we will need to be at our very best in order to compete in this one.” 

It's also another exciting slate of games in both National League Division 1 competitions. It doesn't get any bigger than a local derby between the top two sides in the Men's Division 1 between Limerick Celtics and Limerick Sport Eagles. Both sit on 4-1 records and know that the winner will put themselves in a strong position later in the season. Drogheda Wolves and Moy Tolka Rovers will be ready to pounce on any mistake. They face Team North West and Abbey Seals Dublin Lions respectively in the battle for supremacy. 

Portlaoise Panthers and McEvoy's Cavan Eagles protect the only remaining undefeated records in Ireland and with the Panthers on a rest week, McEvoy's Cavan Eagles can grab top spot in the Women's Division 1 for themselves. They're on the road against Phoenix Rockets. Elsewhere, Limerick Celtics host Moy Tolka Rovers, Swords Thunder and Griffith College Templeogue contest a Dublin derby and Marble City Hawks do battle with SETU Carlow. 

Fixtures: Super League

Saturday, November 12th

1600|Emporium Cork Basketball v University of Galway Maree, Ballincollig Community School.

1830|Energywise Ireland Neptune v DBS Éanna, Neptune Stadium

1900|UCD Marian v Griffith College Templeogue, UCD Sports Centre

1900|Moycullen v Garvey’s Tralee Warriors, Kingfisher Gym

1930| Killester v Belfast Star, IWA Clontarf

1930| EJ Sligo All-Stars v Bright St. Vincents, Mercy College

Sunday, November 13th

1530|UCC Demons v Flexachem KCYMS, Mardyke Arena Super League

Saturday, November 12th

1530|University of Galway Mystics v DCU Mercy, Kingfisher Gym

1700|Ulster University v Killester, Jordanstown Sports Village

1730|Trinity Meteors v Waterford Wildcats, Trinity Sports Centre

Sunday, November 13th

1330|The Address UCC Glanmire v i3PT Mathews, Mardyke Arena

1445|Singleton SuperValu Brunell v Leixlip Amenities Liffey Celtics, Parochial Hall Division 1

Saturday, November 12th

1330| SETU Carlow v Ulster University, Barrow Centre

1700| Team North West v Drogheda Wolves, ATU Donegal

1700| Dwyers of Cork Fr.Mathews v SETU Waterford Vikings, Fr.Mathews Arena

1900|Malahide v Portlaoise Panthers, Malahide Community Centre

1900|Limerick Celtics v Limerick Sport Eagles, Dooradoyle Community Centre

1930|Abbey Seals Dublin Lions v Moy Tolka Rovers, Colaiste Bride Division 1

Saturday, November 12th

1600|Phoenix Rockets v McEvoy’s East Cavan Eagles, Lisburn Racquets

1730|Abbey Seals Dublin Lions v Oblate Dynamos, Colaiste Bride

1730|Swords Thunder v Griffith College Templeogue, ALSAA

1900|Limerick Celtics v Moy Tolka Rovers, Crescent College Dooradoyle

1900|Marble City Hawks v SETU Carlow, O’Loughlin Gaels

1930|St. Pauls Killarney v Limerick Sport Huskies, Aura