ST MIRREN will need to give a considerably better account of themselves than they did against Edinburgh Kings in the Scottish Basketball League at Portobello at the weekend if they are avoid humiliation in the Scottish Cup final against Falkirk Fury at the Pleasance on Saturday.
Saints never recovered from a bad start and after being suckered by a spell of repeat plays from Kings, Simon Flockhart scoring four successive lay-ups from assists from Craig Reilly, they were hit with a 13-0 run which put them 25-12 down and Paddy Campbell added a three-pointer for Kings on the buzzer to make it 33-17 after the first quarter.
Helped by some great combos from Edgars Rekis and Lee Reilly, Kings made it 58-39 by half-time and Lee Reilly hit a big three on the buzzer to take it to 80-57 at the end of the third.
Coach Doug Reilly was running his bench long before the end and still it made no difference, with only Nic Collins and, for a time, Kris Cleary finding the net for the visitors.
Rekis and Lee Reilly shared top spot with 27 each for the Kings, Simon Flockhart completing a “double double” of ten rebounds and 24 points and Craig Reilly adding 11, while Collins had 23 for Saints.
Edinburgh Kool Kats, who unlike their male counterparts have made it to the last stage, had an excellent warm-up on Saturday for their defence of the Scottish Women’s Cup against Glasgow Rocks at the Pleasance on Sunday.
Kats beat St Mirren 61-37, one of their biggest wins over their arch-rivals in recent seasons.
Ahead 39-12 half-time, Kats had effectively wrapped the game up and had coach Graham Gunn purring.
“It was a very good defensive performance,” said Gunn. “I was able to run the bench after that.”
Scottish international centre Rowan Bell, back in the side after missing last week’s game through illness, was top scorer with 19 points while guards Emma Findlay, Sarah O’Brien and Nicola Hargreaves supplied nine each.
Coach Steven Dickson and his cadet men kept up their unbeaten record this season as they, too, prepared for their Scottish Cup final – they face Boroughmuir Blaze at the Pleasance on Saturday – beating Saints 59-40 and for a time Dickson looked as if he might pull off a surprise in the junior men’s league game where he was standing in for coach Jim Wright.
They held the Paisley under-18s to one basket (29-31) at half-time but they were then hit by an 18-0 run and lost the quarter 29-8 with Saints becoming totally dominant, eventually winning 80-52.
Blaze enjoyed a good weekend completing a treble in senior, junior and cadet leagues, their 84-45 senior win over Glasgow Rocks a stick-out.