First Years Win Opening Match: Our Lady’s Bower first years took on Cross and Passion Convent in Kilcullen, Co Kildare in the opening game of the season at the beginning of February.

The visitors got into their rhythm very quickly with two scores from Fiona Zhang and another three from Sally O’Hara followed by another from Amelia Halpin to leave the Bower girls in front 12 points to 4.

CPC hit back in the second quarter winning the closely fought contest by two points. Still the Bower kept the score board ticking over with six points from the hand of Nini Collins. There was not a lot in it at half time, the Bower shading it 18 points to 12.

The second half started well for the visiting team, some high intensity defence causing Kilcullen to cough up the ball a couple of times. Left-handed point guard Katie Boyle and the lightning quick Sally O’Hara causing havoc for the opposition. The Bower tagged on another 7 points in the third quarter 5 from Katie Boyle and 2 from Sally O’Hara. This left the Bower in front going into the final period.

CPC, to their credit threw everything they had at it in the last quarter, keeping the visitors to a single basket from Nini Collins. However, with both teams playing full court pressure defence the home team could only manage 6 points, which was not enough to close the gap between them.

This was a very good start to the season for the girls from the Bower, claiming the win 27 points to 22.

A tough game under their belt they look forward to their next challenge, Presentation Convent, Thurles, at home in Athlone.

Squad: Katie Boyle, Amelia Halpin, Sally O’Hara, Abby O’Sullivan,  Ava Martin, Isabelle Quinn, Laoise O’Donovan,  Nini Collins, Fiona Zhang, Hannah Martin, Maria McLynn, Grace Crossan.

bb warm upSecond Years Blitz Opposition: After the first year team’s win the 2nd years were keen to get started in their first game of the

Midlands Division “A” season against CPC Kilcullen.

This would be a tough contest for the girls, coming up from “B” they now faced last year’s Midlands A winners.   However, the Bower girls went into top gear right from the tip off. They went on an absolute scoring blitz, creating 30 points from play and shutting down the opposition on all but one occasion. Paula Jardon and Gracie Loftus had 8 points each, Sally O’Hara, a first year playing up with the second years had 4 points and Keeva Reid had 10.

The game, as a contest, was over after the opening quarter with the Bower in front 30 points to 2.

The second period went much the same way, with the Bower tagging on a further 12 points, 2 from Hannah Dickie, Katie Boyle, the other first year playing up, had 4 and point guard Sara Robles had 6.

In the second half, things did not get any better for the home team as they found it hard to stay with the pace.

Kate Hyland got in for her first score of the season followed by Spanish point guard Sara Robles who had 4 and the unstoppable Hannah Dickie had 14 points, which brought the score to 62 points to 2 in favour of Our Lady’s Bower.

The job well and truly done for the Bower, coach Des Reilly emptied the bench in the last quarter.

This allowed Cross and Passion to get a foot in the door and they had their best scoring chances of the entire game, netting 6 points. The visitors meanwhile added 8 more from Gracie Loftus, Hannah Dickie, Claudia Lorenzo and Paula Jardon.

It is a much used sports cliché but it is true that you can only play what is in front of you. The gulf in class between the two teams was very evident on the day but the Bower girls played the game the only way they know how. They gave an excellent account of themselves, winning very comfortably 70 points to 8.

Squad: Paula Jardon, Emma Brody, Keeva Reid, Gracie Loftus, Sally O’Hara, Sara Robles, Katie Boyle, Claudia Lorenzo, Kate Hyland, Hannah Dickie.