Panthers travel to Dublin for pre-season friendlies

Portlaoise U-12 and U-13 Boys travelled to Dublin recently to take on Liffey Celtics in two pre-season friendlies.

Portlaoise U-12 and U-13 Boys travelled to Dublin recently to take on Liffey Celtics in two pre-season friendlies.

U-12: Portlaoise Panthers 10 Liffey Celtics 25

The Portlaoise boys U-12 Basketball team travelled to Dublin to play a pre-season friendly against Liffey Celtics.

Portlaoise were slow to get on the score sheet despite good work from Damien Moore and Davin McEvoy. As the quarter went on both teams were playing well with Sam Wynne and Darragh Buggie putting in good performances for the visitors.

The second quarter saw the home team begin to dominate for the first time with good movement of the ball resulting in baskets. The home club opened up a 10 point lead but Portlaoise were eventually rewarded for their hard work with scores from Ben Conroy as the half-time whistle approached.

The second half saw both defences on top with scores very hard to come by. Cathal Murphy and Darragh Buggie played well for Portlaoise and as the game came to a close Jake Conroy and Davin Mc Evoy put points on the score board. Liffey Celtics were the better team on the day and went on to a well deserved win but for the young Portlaoise team it was a great learning experience as they prepare for the upcoming season.

Portlaoise Panthers: Cathal Murphy; Niall Fitzpatrick; Kurt Dinneen Caroll; Sam Wynne; Christian Kenny Oman; Matthew Delaney; Dara Ramsbottom; James Foyle; Daragh Buggie; Jake Conroy; Damien Moore; Davin Mc Evoy; Aaron Lalor; Kurt Carroll; Ben Conroy.

U-13: Portlaoise Panthers 49 Liffey Celtics 22

The Portlaoise Boys U-13 Basketball team travelled to Dublin to play a pre-season friendly against Liffey Celtics who had won the Dublin League and Cup last season as U-12s.

Portlaoise came out of the blocks fast with early baskets from Rian O Connell and Dylan Phelan. Portlaoise were controlling the game with excellent defence that restricted the home team to five points while at the other end they put 12 points on the scoreboard thanks to Pierce Bolger Hinds and James Phelan.

The second quarter saw the home team settle a bit more but again failed to put points on the score board. Portlaoise on the other hand were growing in confidence with Rian O Connell and Pierce Bolger Hinds dominating the boards resulting in scores through Gary Morrissey and Dylan Phelan to help their team to a 15 point lead at the break.

The second half saw the home club come out with renewed determination in front of their home crowd. As the quarter went on both teams were now playing well in what was turning out to be a high standard game, Luke Duffy and Conor Sparrow scored for the home club while Niall Carey and Trevor Swayne finished with scores after good work from their team mates.

The last quarter saw Portlaoise dominate again and opened up a gap with fine shooting from Darren Moore and Ben O Reilly. Liffey Celtics to their credit never gave up battling but there was no stopping Portlaoise in what was an excellent team performance that saw every player put his name on the scoresheet.

As the game came to a close they were controlling the ball and went on to a well deserved win that will see them in good shape as they prepare for an all Ireland Tournament in Cork on Saturday, October 5.

Portlaoise Panthers: Dylan Phelan(Capt); Rian O Connell; Colm Byrne; Gary Morrissey; Pierce Bolger Hinds; James Phelan; Ben O Reilly; Darren Moore; Stephen Mc Cabe; Niall Carey; Trevor Swayne.