Opening defeat for Wildcats

Jazmen Boone (Maxol WIT Wildcats) scores her first competitive basket for her side on Saturday last.

Jazmen Boone (Maxol WIT Wildcats) scores her first competitive basket for her side on Saturday last.

Maxol WIT Wildcats began their season with a defeat at home to DCU in the Mercy secondary sports hall last Saturday evening.
Wildcats had run the Dubliners close in the pre-season tournament recently. However, the home side were short a number of players heading into the league opener making their task all the more difficult.
New head coach Michael Evans, who successfully coached Waterford Crystal for many years, has worked hard with this young bunch of players and overall should be happy with the squad performance.
Although DCU proved too strong on the night, the Maxol WIT Wildcats ‘never say die’ attitude was clearly evident.
Wildcats were short American star Katie Fox due to an injury she picked up in the pre-season, however fellow American Jazmen Boone put in a great performance finishing the games top scorer with 24 points.
DCU had a big height advantage as Wildcats were also without inside players Cathy Kavanagh and Deborah Rodriguez.
Wildcats will also be looking forward to welcoming back sharp shooter Mel Stone for their next game, away next weekend to Premier League newcomers O’Loughlin Panthers in Portlaoise.
The Portlaoise side have won the Division 1 league for the last couple of seasons and will be all fired up for their home debut. With Wildcats hopefully back close to full strength and should they play near their potential, Wildcats can optimistically look forward to this challenge.
Last Saturday Maxol WIT Wildcats started off reasonably well, with some excellent baskets from WIT student Helena Rohan. If Wildcats had taken more of the scoring opportunities they created, the difference at half-time would have been much closer than 23-41. On the night the experience of the Dubliners and the depth of their bench was a telling factor as the young Wildcats side ran into foul trouble.
With captain Sinead Deegan leading by example, Wildcats staged a mini-revival in the fourth quarter scoring 12 unanswered points.
The Fanning sisters, Emily and Annie, along the Ruthie Leavey made it difficult for DCU to find the basket and some wonderful finishing from Jazmen Boone saw Wildcats outscore the Dubliners in the final quarter 21-13.
At the buzzer DCU were victorious with a final score of 73-54. Coach Evans had to introduce teenagers Sarah Whelan and Jordan Kervick, and Jordan duly obliged with her first basket in the Premier League.
Despite the loss Wildcats can take many positives from the game and with players returning can look forward confidently to their first win of the new season in the very near future. Wildcats next home game will be Saturday October 17th at 7pm when they host Kildare side Liffey Celtics.

Saturday Miniball
Wildcats Primary School girls programme is back up and running with great numbers attending. New members are always welcome with the first week free so that young players can see if it is to their liking.
1st & 2nd class 9:30 – 10:30; 3rd & 4th class 10:30 – 11:30 and 5th & 6th class 11:30 – 12:30. It is as simple as turning up at the Mercy Secondary school sports hall in Ozanam St at the appropriate time or call. Head of the programme Jillian Hayes on 087-7996126 for advice.

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