Belfast Telegraph

Bonaparte conquers Belfast Star as play-off hopes falter

By Staff Reporter

Belfast Star's hopes of making the top four All Ireland Premier League play-offs suffered another blow when they were thumped 81-63 at the hands of Templeogue.

The Basketball Ireland Player of the Month, Michael Bonaparte was on fire for the Dubliners as he came up with 31 points during the clash at Methodist College on Saturday night, which has essentially ended Star's hopes of the top four.

The loss of captain Keelan Cairns on the back of Michael McKillop to a season-long injury has clearly left a huge hole in terms of their defence and that was all too evident against Templeogue.

Star coach Neal McCotter said: "Getting it back to within seven points in the third quarter, we gave ourselves a chance but then missed a few too many shots.

"Without Keelan and Michael we're up against it, we lose that physical presence. The guys were fantastic on Saturday night, we made Templeogue work for their win."

It proved to be a bad weekend for the Ulster Rockets in the women's Division One as they suffered two defeats, losing 65-53 to Fr Matthews and 76-65 to ITC.

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