Ireland Kick Off FIBA Euros For Small Countries With Win

Basketball Ireland

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Ireland 104-33 Andorra

Ireland Women kicked-off their FIBA European Championship For Small Countries campaign in Nicosia, Cyprus with a 71-point victory over Andorra.

The game marks their first match since 2019 after they were forced into a Covid-induced break, and also their first win.

Ireland started as they meant to go on with the offensive power of the side proving to be too much for the Andorran defence early on.

Dayna Finn, who was on her debut, led the side in scoring on the night with 14 points and was an important figure at the start of the game.

Finn helped her side gain a commanding 17-0 lead and James Weldon’s side marched on from there, never letting go of the advantage they had.

Edel Thornton was the thorn in the Andorrans’ sides as she racked up three steals in the first quarter alone.

Ireland upped their game in the second quarter, posting 32 points – their largest haul in any quarter.

The side’s defensive rebounds were instrumental in their attacking display as their counter-attacks proved lethal against the Andorran defence.

The Andorrans suffered an error-filled display courtesy of the hard work and tenacity of the likes of Thornton and Rachel Huijsdens.

Hower, Noah Mico Lorenzo and Cristina Andres Rabasa showed up for their country and put up double-digit points.

Through this solid defence, the Irish continued to have unanswered high-scoring runs.

The side finished the game with 36 defensive rebounds and 27 offensive rebounds, including the one that led to the lay-up Grainne O’Dwyer pounced on to break the 100-point barrier.

Weldon and co. will be impressed with their showing in the opener in Nicosia and will now look towards a game against Malta on Thursday afternoon.

Ireland: Michelle Clarke (9), Aine McKenna (10), Dayna Finn (14), Claire Rockall (7), Rachel Huijsdens (9), Grainne Dwyer (11), Edel Thornton (4), Fiona O’Dwyer (10), Claire Melia (9), Hannah Thornton (5), Sorcha Tiernan (12), Aine O’Connor (4).

Andorra: Cristina Andres Rabasa (10), Noah Mico Lorenzo (13), Laura Laurent Marrugat, Mariona Palou Vidal, Carla Solana Perez (2), Claudia Brunet Solano (6), Julia Marquez Tomas (2), Anna Mana Buscall, Patricia Meira Gallego, Mireia Magrinya Alonso, Cloe Torcuato Rodriguez (DNP).

To see the recently announced Men’s squad, click here.

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