The first awards were given out this weekend at the BNI Cup and Plate Finals in the Foyle Arena as Belfast Star and BC Wolves won the Cup and Plate, BNI would like to thanks all volunteers and officials for their great work, including the league convenor Mark O’Neill and North Star co-ordinator who hosted the finals Niall McDermott.
The Foyle Arena has just been opened this season and Adrian Boyle Programming Services Manager at Foyle Arena is “delighted to be hosting such a prestigious tournament. Foyle Arena has been working with numerous NGB’s to bring elite sporting events to the North West. Having BNI’s major tournament shows the commitment of both parties to providing high class sport at NI’s premier sporting Arena.”
The weekend had some fantastic close matches and some great upsets which is really what the cup competition is about, it gives the chance for a team playing in a lower division a chance to see can they compete or even beat teams in the league above and this did happen numerous times.
Firstly the plate champions champions who are a new club into the leagues managed to beat 4 division 1 teams en route to lifting the Plate Trophy, this leads to big ambitions for the club to win Division 2 and get promoted into the Division 1 league, the club also is hoping to expand into a junior club! In the semi-final they battled against Tyrone Towers who are consistently producing teams in play-off competitions and are extremely experienced, Towers had a chance to put the game into over-time with the last shot of game but unfortunately it was not to be. In the other semi-final the Tiger’s probably caused the upset of the tournament by beating last year’s cup champions with a great effort from all 10 members of the squad, scores, stops and rebounds were coming from everyone, Elks on the other hand were low on players due to injuries and with Matthew McColgan just returning this season the Elks just couldn’t click into gear.
In the cup Kilkeel showed why they are top of the Premier League with a superb shooting display against home team North Star, the ball movement and execution of the squad was too much to handle for the Derry men, Kevin Stanley work hard at creating shots for his team-mates but Kilkeel had size and the speed. In the final Kilkeel played Star and the game had plenty of excitement with it starting even but Kilkeel controlling the 2nd and 3rd quarters before Star exploded in the 4th with a 28-9 run led by Matthew Jackson.
Checkout all photos and full recap of games on our facebook page.