Ecstasy for Pres as fightback seals spot in final
Presentation Bray 49
St Aidan's CBS Whitehall 48
There was agony for one team but ecstasy for the other as Presentation Bray won through to the final after this terrific display at the Shoreline Community centre in Greystones on Tuesday.
Michael Curley had turned in a very strong first quarter for Aidan's with 11 points, but successive baskets from Ash O'Callaghan and Andy Bartley had seen Bray cut Aidan's lead down to seven points, 17-10, by the end of the quarter.
Aidan's maintained their lead in the second, with U16 team member Liam Ashton to the fore, but Luke Gorman's strong presence on the inside ensured that Bray had made further inroads by the break, Aidan's now leading just 27-24.
The third quarter was a terrific affair with Bray's exciting young prospect Marc Lennon seeking to take the game to Aidan's at every opportunity.
And, with 1 minute 25 left in the third, Bray had finally drawn level only for Sean Ryan to convert one of his two free throws from the line to leave it 38-37.
And so to the final period, which saw Aidan's extend their lead to eight points following scores from Curley, Niall Ryan and Sean Ryan.
But a one-point free throw was to see Bray begin their comeback, with Andy Bartley showing the form that has seen him earn a call-up to the Irish U16 squad.
Bartley and Gorman were the driving force that saw Bray retake a 49-47 lead but, having surrendered possession with 16 seconds to go, Bray had to endure some nailbiting moments as Aidan's went to the line.