WNBL: Griffin’s Spirit chasing top spot as Boomers get back on winners list

Kelsey Griffin | Credit: Bendigo Spirit

Round 11 kicked off with a valiant effort from Adelaide which resulted in a 6 points loss to last year’s reigning premiers, Townsville.

Without veteran Laura Hodges, the game was predicted to be an ugly one. However a spirited performance from the Lightning forced a close one after suffering an early deficit.

Suzy Batkovic and her fellow Fire teammates were too strong and managed to hang on to their lead on the back of a huge game from none other than Batkovic herself. Finishing up with 24 points, 9 rebounds and 2 assists, Batkovic refused to let her side suffer a loss.

Colleen Planeta was brilliant for the Lightning with 20 points and 13 rebounds, supported by Samantha Logic with 17 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists. Townsville’s consistent soldier in Mia Murray was again damaging, finding 14 points and 10 rebounds.

Bendigo held on to their lead against Canberra at home despite getting quite the scare from the Capitals, taking away a 10 point win.

It was all things Kelsey Griffin who dominated with 26 points, 10 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocked shots. Nayo Raincock-Ekunwe also provided a solid game with 11 points, 12 rebounds and 4 assists.

Griffin’s huge last quarter effort allowed her to earn this round’s Player of the Week. Catch all her highlights below:

Marianna Tolo (22 points, 5 rebounds and 2 assists) and Mikaela Ruef (13 rebounds and 11 rebounds) were gutsy for the Capitals, but Bendigo’s talent was far too physical and dynamic to lose this one.

Sydney pulled off an epic win to knock off top-of-the-table Dandenong by 15 points, led by the brilliant effort of Asia Taylor.

Taylor led the Flames from the front, and a brilliant second half from Sydney forced Dandenong too far out of this one. With 18 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals, Taylor was also joined by 4 other Flames in double figures in a gallant team effort.

The efforts of Aimie Clydesdale, Steph Cumming and Sara Blicavs were there, but poor execution and a smashing on the rebounds gave Sydney this massive win.

Despite sitting second last on the ladder, the Melbourne Boomers effort has been there despite not getting the wins on the board. However they finally got their win against the quality outfit of the Canberra Capitals, the Boomers executed a 20 point win from the get go.

There we no standouts for the Boomers, just a combined unit executing Guy Molloy’s plan perfectly. Dynamic point guard Brittany Smart totalled 10 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals and Maddie Garrick was also solid with 11 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.

For Canberra, it was all Mikaela Ruef (17 points, 17 rebounds) and Marianna Tolo (17 points, 7 rebounds) again. Despite the two tall’s dominance inside, the Boomers effort was the difference.

Despite their gallant effort on Friday night, it was a different story for the Adelaide Lightning when they headed to Perth to take on the furious Lynx. The Lynx scored a massive 102 points to Adelaide’s 52

The Lightning committed a whopping 23 turnovers in comparison to Perth’s incredible effort to keep their turnover count to just 4.

Sami Whitcomb tore Adelaide apart in the first half, finishing up with 26 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists and 5 steals. Her efforts were closely followed by Antonia Edmondson (24 points) and Carley Mijovic (15 points and 6 rebounds).

For the Lightning, Colleen Planeta provided yet again a solid game with 17 points, and Tayla Roberts was also good with 13 points, but there wasn’t much else to celebrate for Adelaide in this one.

For all of the Round 11 highlights, check out the video below:


Round 12 Previews

Adelaide Lightning vs Sydney Uni Flames

Both teams will benefit from a much-needed break over Christmas, however with Sydney’s recent form this could be out of Adelaide’s depth.

Key Match-Ups:

Colleen Planeta vs Asia Taylor

Perth Lynx vs Sydney Uni Flames

Suiting up to be one epic game, both the Lynx and the Flames are in fine form and this game could provide some insight into what the 16/17 WNBL finals series holds.

Key Match-Ups:

Antonia Edmondson vs Alex Wilson

Townsville Fire vs Melbourne Boomers

The Boomers brilliant win over Canberra could be the spark of fire they needed, however they will be truly tested by the quality outfit that is Townsville away from home.

Key Match-Ups:

Mia Murray vs Alice Kunek

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