DkIT Mens Basketball Win All-Ireland Shield

On Saturday morning DKIT Basketball Fresher's team travelled to the All-Ireland Fresher's Tournament hosted by IT Carlow. It had 13 Men's teams competing along with 12 women's over two days with Cup and Plates up for grabs. On the day off the tournament DIT pulled out and left DKIT and IT Carlow to play each other twice.

Fresher's Pool Game 1

IT Carlow 32 DKIT 17

The first game of the tournament was against the hosts and they had some strong players and a well organised team that would pose difficulties for the DKIT team. The hosts raced out to a first quarter lead of 10-3 thanks to good play from their Irish international point guard Karlo Vasquez. In the second quarter was much of the same from IT Carlow but DKIT showed glimpses of quality play with captain Aaron Lawless and Sammi Sanni hitting great scores. The second half was a lot more competitive with the teams trading baskets. The DKIT defence was led by great rebounding from centre Cian Dillion. In the final quarter DKIT knew they needed to close the gap because DIT had dropped out of the tournament so IT Carlow and DKIT now would play each other twice and on aggregate and the winners go through to the cup semi's and the losers into the plate semi-final. So DKIT put some good scores on the board but IT Carlow ran out easy victors.

Scorers; Aaron Lawless 11, Cian Dillion 3, Sammi Sanni 3

Pool Game 2

IT Carlow 20 DKIT 22

The second game was played with a lot more passion from the Dundalk lads. They got a good early start thanks to great defence by Sammi, Cian and Stephen Lally. The defensive pressure continued with DKIT only giving up one point in the second quarter and got good inside scores from Cian Dillion and Lawless. Sammi Sanni began to grow into a very important player both offensively and defensively. Going into the final two minutes of the game DKIT led by ten points but some poor choices and shot selections allowed IT Carlow back into the game. But the Dundalk lads held strong for a well fought victory but wasn't enough for a cup semi so they went into a plate semi-final.

Scorers; Aaron Lawless 7, Sammi Sanni 7, Cian Dillion 6, Liam Woods 2

Plate Semi Final

DKIT 32 DCU 24

DKIT faced the team that beat them in the cup semi-final last year in DCU. So coach Darren McGovern had the team well up for the game and they began very well but struggled with the man to man pressure of DCU in the first quarter. In the second quarter the team captain Lawless stepped up with some great scores and Sammi contributed on defence to get the team back in contention at half time with the team's level at 17 points a piece. In the second quarter forward Liam Woods hit some great plays inside and Sammi hit a big three to put DKIT 27-21 in front going into the final quarter. Learning from the last game when winning in the final quarter the lads knew how to close out the game in style to make the first final in DKIT basketball history.

Scorers; Sammi Sanni 9, Aaron Lawless 8, Liam Woods 7, Stephen Lally 3, Cian Dillion 4

Plate Final

DKIT 71 UCC 53

In DKIT's first final the freshers from Dundalk showed their coach and everyone watching the game that they were not there to make up the numbers with some of the best basketball played that has been seen at this level ever. Baskets from Lawless, Sanni and Woods put UCC under pressure early and they looked to their national league player Luke O Mahoney from Demons to keep them in the game and that's exactly what he did. After the first quarter it was 17-13 to UCC. DKIT knew they had to tighten up at the back and help each other on defence. A fantastic shooting display from Aaron Lawless the second quarter help DKIT close the gap then extent it in DKIT's favour. Strong defence from Woods and Dillion at the back set up some great fast break baskets for Sammi for a half time lead of 33-28 to DKIT. The belief within the DKIT lads that they could take a scalp of huge University squad like UCC led them to another fantastic display with Sammi Sanni being the star of this quarter leaving all the coaches in the crowd well impressed with his athleticism and ability to score under pressure. Going into the final quarter DKIT led 49-38. With another led going into the final quarter it was again the experience of this that led the team to a comfortable victory at the end. The scoring power of DKIT in this game was the key to victory.

Scorers; Aaron Lawless 28, Sammi Sanni 22, Liam Woods 13, Cian Dillion 10, Stephen Lally 2

Team ( the pic with the shield)

Back row l-r Kevin Metzger, Aaron Lawless (c), Cian Dillion, Nedas Bulakis, Darren McGovern (Coach)

Front row l-r Liam Woods, Stephen Lally, Sammi Sanni, Mario Lopez