TCC attended this year’s Basketball NI Junior Finals event in the Antrim Forum [Check out last year’s finals post here]. It was a jam packed schedule with ten Junior Finals competitions and the BNI Women’s League Final between Tyrone Towers and Lisburn Phoenix.
Some of the highlights included:
- A thrilling OT game between the Ulster Elks and Blackwater Steelers U13 girls – 5-points in OT from Grace Kennedy locked down the silverware for the Elks.
- The absurd amount of supporters for Letterkenny Blaze‘s U18 boys and girls team. The noise level was off the scale.
- We almost witnessed the biggest upset of the year as Queen’s held on against Belfast Star right down to the wire. Odhran Eastwood led the assault for Queen’s while Adam Ryan provided some clutch jumpers in the final few minutes of the contest.
- Appreciating that the influx of foreign nationals (in particular, Lithuanians) has improved the quality of the game: aptly demonstrated by Blackwater Steelers‘ forward Ramunas Kamanauskas, with an awesome dunk in the U18 B Boys final.
- North Star’s Jordan McClelland dropping 25 against a tough Letterkenny side
- #TheFuture – young CJ Fulton crossing up anyone and everyone who got in his way in the boys U12 final. This kid has sicker handles than his old man, former Irish International, Adrian Fulton.
- Getting every minute of every game* on video!
Belfast Star 35 Blackwater Steelers 10
Top scorers: CJ Fulton- 15 (Belfast Star), K Gallagher- 4 (Blackwater Steelers)
MVP C Ryan (Belfast Star)
Belfast Star 43 Tyrone Towers 38
Top scorers: J Smye- 27 (Belfast Star) O Morgan- 24 (Tyrone Towers)
MVP J Smye (Belfast Star)
U16 Boys A:
Belfast Star 45 Queens 40
Top scorers: A Ryan- 18 (Belfast Star) G Horner- 15 (Queens)
MVP A Ryan (Belfast Star)
U16 Boys B:
Belfast Star 49 Newry Fliers 24
Top scorers: P Owens- 9 (Belfast Star) E McStay- 6 (Newry Fliers)
MVP J Corr (Belfast Star)
U18 Boys A:
Letterkenny Blaze 74 North Star 51
Top Scorers: T Hickey- 18 (Blaze) J McClelland– 25 (North Star)
MVP T Hickey (Blaze)
U18 Boys B:
Blackwater Steelers 62 Rising Stars 41
Top scorers: R Ramanauskas- 21 (Blackwater Steelers) P Sevilla- 15 (Rising Stars)
MVP R Ramanauskas (Blackwater Steelers)
Blackwater Steelers 35 Elks 40
Top scorers: M McKenna- 12 (Blackwater Steelers) E Maguire- 14 (Elks)
MVP K McCormill (Blackwater Steelers)
Elks 40 Phoenix B.C 25
Top Scorers: E Maguires- 18 (Elks) E Morris- 8 (Phoenix)
MVP C McCreanor (Elks)
Blackwater Steelers 45 Tyrone Towers 25
Top Scorers: E Mulligan 10 and E O’Brien 10 Blackwater Steelers E Lafferty 15 Towers
MVP: V O’Connor (Blackwater Steelers)
Letterkenny Blaze 41 Phoenix B.C 35
C Brennan-9 & L Barrett- 9 (Blaze) K Mason- 9 (Phoenix)
MVP L Crawford Blaze
Congratulations to all those involved in making the day a huge success. Well-done to all players, coaches, referees, table officials, event organisers (Annmaire Doherty and John Scott, to name a few), supporters, parents, fans, cafeteria staff, Antrim Forum staff… All of you helped to create a great basketball event. It’s all about ‘The Collective’
Special thanks to our TCC team, who continuously volunteer their time for a better basketball culture in Ireland: John Wynne, Fiona Sullivan, Alex Nelson, Dave Wilson, Megan Lynch
*except the final two minutes of OT in the Ulster Elks vs Blackwater Steelers U13 game (Great, right? NOT.)