Game MVP, Seamus Howard put up a huge 30 points as St. Brendan’s College battled out a 55-47 point victory over Midleton to bag the 2023/24 All-Ireland Under 19C Boys Schools Cup in the National Basketball Arena on Tuesday afternoon.

It certainly did not take Howard long to make his presence felt as the St. Brendan’s co-captain chalked up eight points to help his side open up a three-point lead heading into the second quarter.

Six points apiece by Mikolaj Urbanski and Mateusz Bielinski kept Midleton well in contention, and those same two players, along with Jakub Krzeminski, continued to play a huge part in propelling their side into four-point advantage by the half-time break

But St. Brendan’s came out firing on all fours in the second half, Howard landing three baskets in quick succession, while Patrick Conroy, Liam Maloney and Colin O’Donnell each served up a deuce to see the Belmullet side back in front 34-31 before a timeout was called.

That lead was pushed out to seven thanks to buckets from Troy Gaughan and Howard, but Midleton managed to recover some ground before the close of the third quarter when Bielinski sank his effort from outside the arc.

Another Howard score was answered with a three-pointer by Urbanski as Midleton looked to keep pace with their Mayo rivals.

But while Sean O’Brien’s basket cancelled out the two shots that Howard drained from the free-throw line, St. Brendan’s moved nine points ahead when Howard and James Heffernan found the target.

Midleton kept searching for a way back in, but they just could not make enough stops to really challenge St. Brendan’s down the stretch.

And, although two from the line by Urbanski did reduce Midleton’s arrears to six, the Mayo side were able to hold firm and wind the clock down.


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