Kilkenny basketball: Marble City Hawks are flying high

MCH 68pts; Ulster Elks 52pts

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Kilkenny basketball: Marble City Hawks are flying high

This was the Marble City Hawks fifth National Basketball League game of the season and a win would put them top of the table again.
The Hawks won three of their previous four game, but last weekend they were on the road on consecutive days.
After beating the Fabplus North West on Saturday night they travelled across to Belfast to take on the big shooting Ulster Elks.
The Elks averaged 70+ points per game beefore this.
The Hawks started with a massed defence and tried to keep the big scoring Nia Moore quiet. The tall Tennessee University player was extremely athletic and looked like she was going to be a handful as she hit some good baskets from close range.
Kelly O’Hallahan started really well and inspired her side. Some great defence from Sheila Sheehy and good help defence ensured the Elks didn’t get any easy scores.
The Hawks took control near the end of the quarter. Katie Fox’s pace hurt and they got some nice scores from Aine Sheehy and Shiela, her sister, to close the gap.
The score at the end of the quarter was 21-17 to the Elks.
For the Hawks the second quarter was about defence and work rate. Twenty points a quarter wasn’t something they could allow.
The combination of Elaine Kennington and Sheila Sheehy and superb help defence kept the Elks to 11 points.
As well, Aine Katie and Claire ensured that the Elks three pointers were stopped. Hawks hit another 17 points through great plays and face moving offence.
Once again massive scores came from Kelly, Aine and Rachel Butler. The Hawks went in at the half 32-34 ahead.
The Hawks did even better in the next quarter, finishing 43-48 in front.
The fourth quarter was a tight affair as the Elks put full court pressure on Katie Fox. But as they opened up Elaine Kennington and Sheila grabbed lots of scores.
The turning point was when the Hawks stole possession three times in-a -row and scored off each one curtesy of Aine Sheehyand Katie Fox.
Caoimhe O’Neill made her first league start and wasn’t out of place on the big stage.
Next game is on November 25 in the National Cup quarter-finall in Father Matthews.

Marble City Hawks - Kelly O’Hallahan (27pts), Sheila Sheehy (12pts), Aine Sheehy (11pts), Elaine Kennington (10pts), Katie Fox (4pts), Claire Kelly (2pts), Rachel Butler (2pts), Anne Prendergast (inj), Phil Fogarty (inj).