Portlaoise Panthers U-12 boys team fell just sort of the Top Four title after what was a very exciting game of basketball. The score line does not justify what an amazing game the two teams played.
When both these teams meet, we know that these matches will be absolute crackers and this game definitely lived up to the bill. Portlaoise began the game well with Damian Moore and Jamie Preston getting the Panthers onto the score board.
In what was a low scoring game, the defence of both teams was excellent; Aaron Dooley and Matthew Delaney grabbed numerous rebounds and worked tirelessly for their team. Sean Gilbather got a number of blocks for his team in the opening quarter. After one quarter the game was extremely tight and the crowd knew that they were in store for a great match.
Like in the previous quarter there was not much scoring because of the excellent defending of both teams. Luke Thompson and Kyle Enright kept the score board ticking over for the Panthers who did not want to let Kestrels get away.
Dara Ramsbottom and Eoghan Dempsey did a super job on the defensive end getting some excellent steals and blocking a couple of shots. Davin McEvoy was having a good game on the defensive end grabbing rebounds for his team; he was also posing the biggest threat on the offensive end.
Baskets were hard to come by in the second half and people felt that one basket could decide the faith of the game. Defence was so important for both teams; Tiernan Hayes and Jack Grant did an excellent job fighting for every ball that came their way. Moore nailed a shot from distance which ignited the Panthers.
But unfortunately for the Panthers it wasn’t enough. Kestrels went on to win the game by two points.
Throughout the year the boys have played super basketball, claiming the Midlands League title. The boys can hold their heads high after what truly was an excellent season for them.