Spirit chases series victory
BENDIGO Spirit will fight to claim a series victory against Melbourne Boomers in Tuesday night’s Cygnett Women’s National Basketball League match.
Spirit’s showdown with the Boomers from 6pm at Red Energy Arena on Marong Road caps another big run of two home games in six days.
Spirit was on the West Bendigo court on Thursday night for the clash with UC Capitals.
The 13th round plays a big part in Bendigo’s play-off fortunes.
Last Saturday night’s 21-point victory against Perth Lynx on the road was vital in the club’s quest to claim a top-four berth.
“Any win, especially away from home, is really important,” said Spirit coach Kennedy Kereama.
“We are now one-all in our series with Perth, and one-one with the Boomers.”
Both of this season’s matches between Bendigo and Melbourne have been decided by single-figure margins.
In round three, Melbourne won 76-74.
Spirit was back at Parkville on 30 November and clinched an 81-78 victory.
“Every win is always different. The way we fought to beat Melbourne last time was excellent,” said Kereama.
“It’s going to be another tough match,” he said of a Boomers team that includes Jordin Canada, Naz Hillmon and Tera Reed.
Melbourne forward Sara Blicavs played for Spirit from 2013 to 2015 and was part of the WNBL championship-winning team in 2014.
Tuesday’s match pits Keely Froling against her sister and Spirit playmaker Alicia.
Kereama said there were many outstanding plays in the win against Lynx.
“Mehryn Kraker was outstanding,” the coach said of a match in which the guard scored 27 points.
“Mehryn also had the big role of defending Amy Attwell and did so brilliantly.
“It’s not easy to be racking up the points like Mehryn did, but also playing strong defence.”
Spirit centre Ruth Davis scored 15 points and won 10 rebounds against Lynx in one of her best games of the season.
Bendigo went into the 13th round in sixth place on a win-loss tally of 7-9 and determined to to keep the heat on Lynx, 9-8; Sydney Flames, 10-8; and Boomers, 10-7, to stay in the title race.