Maigh Cuilinn face Griffith College as Superleague winds down

The Basketball Ireland Superleague season is rapidly entering its closing phase. The visit of Griffith College Eanna this Sunday to the University of Galway Sports Arena, will be Maigh Cuilinn’s second-last home game of the 2023/2024 campaign.

With so few fixtures left, the importance of positive results grows ever greater. As the Connemara men sit keenly balanced between chasing a playoff spot but still being at risk of relegation, this weekend is a superb chance of a home win.

Optimism for Maigh Cuilinn will arise from a recent run of good performances, as they have been competitive in every game and have picked up a couple of key wins against Sligo All-Stars and University of Ulster along the way.

In Griffith College Eanna, they face a true title contender who are currently sitting second in the Northern Conference and boast an impressive 10 win and 5 loss record as compared to Maigh Cuilinn’s 5 wins and 10 losses.

Neutrals will be happy if Sunday’s affair matches the excitement of the equivalent fixture last season when just a single basket separated the teams for the majority of the game. With the game entering the closing four minutes however, Eanna found some truly exceptional individual scores at the death, and ran out a flattering 11 point winner. In truth, it will be that devastating scoring potential that Maigh Cuilinn will need to contain better this time around.

In Sean Jenkins, the Dublin side have one of the best Irish players in the game alongside the always assured American point guard John Wilson who has in recent years become one of the faces of the Superleague. If Maigh Cuilinn can limit the influence of that backcourt duo then a big win is certainly on the cards.

“We have been really strong at home this year so getting wins in both our remaining games in the Kingfisher is really important,” said Maigh Cuilinn captain Grant Olsson.

“Eanna are really tough and their league position reflects the standard they are at, but we played them close last year without hitting our best and so if we do what we need to do, we will have a great chance.”

What Maigh Cuilinn will need to do is rediscover their shooting form that temporarily abandoned them last weekend. While they played a competitive and close game against Neptune of Cork (leading by as much as 11 points at one stage ), they failed to hit from three point range as they had been doing in prior games and shot just 21 per cent, registering a ten point loss.

In the end, the ten point win for Neptune was a fair reflection of a game that Neptune did dominate for large periods and while neither team will be happy with how they played offensively, the visitors had some excellent scores when needed.

 

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