Men’s Super League 2021/2022 – Round 10

Killester 102

Garvey’s Tralee Warriors 87

Following their famous National Cup semi-final win over DBS Éanna in Cork last weekend, Garvey’s Tralee Warriors were brought back to earth with a 102-87 defeat at the hands of Killester at the IWA in Clontarf on Saturday night, just seven days before they take to the court in Tallaght for the Cup Final showdown with C&S Neptune. Hitting 87 points in a Super League game would normally secure you a win, but when Killester’s American Kason Harrell produced a shooting masterclass ending the game with an astonishing 56 points, then 87 points was unlikely to be enough.

The sides traded scores in what was an entertaining opening quarter with Daniel Jokubaitis hitting a couple of threes to open his and the Warriors accounts, but Farouq Raheem and Tomas Fernandez were also in range from outside for Killester either side of Kason Harrell’s first three scores of the game. Two excellent scores from distance from Brandon Cotton and another from inside drew the Warriors level but a three from Harrell followed by two flawless visits to the free throw line edged his side ahead by 26-24 at quarter time.

Harrell continued where he left off early in the second and when Killester introduced John Behan the pair combined to push the hosts ahead by 34-28. Nikola Roso entered the fray to hit one of his trademark inside scores and Cotton and Jokubaitis chipped in to cut the Killester gap. However, Harrell was only warming up as he embarked on a scoring spree that would see him hit 13 points from outside, inside, and free throws in the second half of the quarter to leave Killester with a fully deserved 51-32 lead at the long break.

Warriors Head Coach John Dowling’s half time team talk would have been at best uncompromising, and his charges responded by producing their best minutes of the game in the third quarter. After Harrell and Raheem were again on the mark for Killester, Jokubaitis hit four sensational threes along with two from Eoin Quigley and another by Darragh O’Hanlon and suddenly the Warriors were back to within 4 points. But just when it looked like the Warriors momentum would see them go on to take the lead, Harrell and Fernandez found the scores for Killester to regain the initiative. A three from Harrell late on put the hosts 76-68 up at three quarter time.

Killester hit the first four scores of the final quarter to push their advantage out to 85-70 with Harrell, Fernandez and Behan in range. Quigley responded for the Warriors with two defiant three-point efforts but Harrell’s incredible run of scores continued right to the end as the American added another 13 points to his final tally of 56. Two fine scores from beyond the arc from Brandon Cotton and another from Aaron Fleming kept the scoreline respectable, but the evening belonged to Killester and in particular Kason Harrell, whose parents were in attendance to see his outstanding display, as the Dublin side ran out 102-87 winners in the end.

Top scorers: Killester: Kason Harrell 56, Tomas Fernandez 24, Farouq Raheem 8

Garvey’s Tralee Warriors: Brandon Cotton 24, Daniel Jokubaitis 24, Eoin Quigley 18

The focus for Garvey’s Tralee Warriors switches immediately to the Pat Duffy National Cup final as they prepare for their date with destiny, taking on C&S Neptune on Saturday next in the National Basketball Arena in Tallaght, with tip off at 6.00pm.

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