Poor start costs Moycullen back-to-back league wins

The Moycullen duo of Paul Freeman and Brandon McGuire, seen here in action against Maree's Kenneth Hansberry last week. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.
The Moycullen duo of Paul Freeman and Brandon McGuire, seen here in action against Maree's Kenneth Hansberry last week. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Moycullen 78

DCU SAINTS 85

Coming off the back of a derby-win over rivals Maree last weekend, SSE Airtricity Moycullen sought to make it two wins from two games when they entertained DCU this past weekend.

However, a tentative start, coupled with some sustained DCU sharpshooting, meant Moycullen were forced to chase the visitors for the entire game, and in the end they came up short.

DCU never gave Moycullen the opportunity to get into an offensive rhythm in the early goings, and Moycullen failed to respect the range of the DCU guards, who punished them from distance.

“They connected on some three-pointers, and that left us in an early 14-point hole which we had to work hard to dig ourselves out of,” said Moycullen head coach John Cunningham.

Moycullen had to dig deep just to keep the game from slipping out of their grasp before the halftime buzzer. Most of Moycullen’s scoring in the first half came from their trio of inside players – Irish senior international Paul Freeman, American import Brandon Mcguire, and Joseph Tummon.

“We fought back slowly, had it back to six at the end of the quarter, but then we missed way too many scoring opportunities and turned over too much possession in the second quarter, and they were able to build up their lead again,” Cunningham added.

Indeed, DCU’s lead rose as high as 20 points midway through the second quarter, leaving Moycullen with a lot of work to do. But in the second-half, Moycullen looked a different side, and the scores and defensive stops started to come more frequently.

Guards James Loughnanne, Patrick Lyons and Mindaugus Kurcenkovas each picked up steals and ran in some fastbreak layups in the third. Once again, they reduced the lead, but two quick DCU three’s in the dying moments of that quarter broke some of the momentum they had built.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.