03 Dec 2021

Leixlip's Fatimah Akorede gets vital early baskets in victory over Great Britain at European Championship

FIBA U16 Women’s European Basketball Championship

Leixlip's Fatimah Akorede plays her part in Ireland's victory over Great Britain at European Championship

The team pictured after their win

Ireland Under 16 Women defeated a pacey and determined Great Britain, 58-66, in Classification 13-16 at the FIBA U16 Women’s European Championship, Division B in Podgorica, Montenegro.

The first quarter started out at a slow pace as both teams struggled to find their rhythm. Kate Hickey and Leixlip's Fatimah Akorede made early baskets for the girls in green as they kept up with the fast pace of Great Britain. Hickey had an excellent first quarter, scoring and rebounding, as Great Britain led, 12-11, at the end of the first.

Ireland began to frustrate Great Britain on defence as they secured steals and blocks, however, Ireland began to make mistakes on offence also, allowing Great Britain to score repeatedly. Ireland went ahead late in the second quarter with help from Hickey and Ciara Byrne but Great Britain scored two free-throws at the end of the half to have the sides level, going into halftime, 24-24.

The lead changed hands multiple times in the third quarter. Great Britain utilised their fast pace to take advantage of Ireland on the fast break. Ireland out-rebounded Great Britain on the offensive boards which got some well-needed points for Karl Kilbride’s side, as they had the lead, 40-43, heading into the final quarter.

Ciara Byrne and Kate Hickey stepped up early in the fourth to give their side the lead. Great Britain continued to fight back and brought the score level, until Akorede scored a massive three for Ireland to extend Ireland’s lead. Siofra O’Shea and Byrne extended the lead even further as Ireland ran out winners, 58-66.

Kilcullen's Gillian Wheeler is also on the team.
Ireland will play the winners of Slovakia v Switzerland, which is currently being played, tomorrow at 12:45pm.

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