Fahy proves most valuable to University of Limerick's Huskies
Michelle Fahy during UL Huskies 69-59 victory over Team Montenotte in January's cup final.
SPORTSWOMAN OF THE MONTH:When a team only loses one match in almost two years, wins the double in 2012 and then retains the Superleague the year after, choosing just one of the players responsible for such a run of success as our monthly award winner is a task bordering on the nigh-on-impossible.
It has, after all, been a team effort like few others, as coach James Weldon has always insisted. And there have been few teams in Irish basketball through the years that have matched the achievements of the University of Limerick’s Huskies, their 69-59 victory over Team Montenotte in January’s epic Superleague National Cup final avenging that rare defeat in December that ended their 45-game winning streak.
With 26 points in the final, top scorer Rachel Vanderwal would have been a more than worthy winner of our January award, as would several of her team-mates, but, in the end, they were pipped by the game’s MVP (Most Valuable Player) and Basketball Ireland’s Player of the Month for January, Michelle Fahy.
The Galwegian came within a whisker of winning the January 2012 award for her performance in the SuperLeague semi-final win over, yes, Team Montenotte (who were going for a six-in-a-row), and for her MVP display in the final – this time, though, there was no dispute.
Fahy’s efforts after the half-time break, in particular, when her team led by just two points, shooting two from two and creating openings for her team-mates with superb passing, helped UL to a seven point lead going in to the final quarter.
In the end, the gap was a seemingly comfortable 10 points, UL scoring 11 points in the final three minutes, but it was anything but comfortable after the mother of all battles, Fahy helping carry her team home by contributing 14 points to their total. Ideally, the award would go to the entire UL team, but Fahy isn’t a half bad representative.