Lightning strikes thrice as Bendigo sweep series

10 January 2024 | Bendigo Spirit news

Bendigo Spirit have completed a series whitewash against Adelaide with a dominant 96-68 victory at Red Energy Arena on Wednesday.

In their first Bendigo home game of the New Year, the Spirit celebrated Casey Samuels’ 150th WNBL appearance in style in a one-sided affair.

It ended up being the Spirit’s highest score of the season with five players reaching double figures.

Abbey Wehrung got the ball rolling with a 13-point opening half on the way to a game-high 18 points, including four of six from long-range.

Speedster Ally Wilson (12 points and 10 assists) finished with a double-double to continue her impressive season, while centre Ruth Davis (11 points and nine rebounds) fell one rebound shy of joining her.

In her milestone game, Samuels (13 points) gave Bendigo a double-digit advantage with four minutes to go in the opening term after a clutch triple.

Wehrung was also deadly from outside the arc, hitting twice before quarter-time to inspire the Spirit to their highest first-quarter score of the season with 33 to Adelaide’s 15.

Bendigo led by as much as 23 during the second term and appeared it total control before the visitors stormed before to make it 51-40 at half-time.

The home side bounced back hard in the third with coach Kennedy Kereama no doubt impressed with the impact of his bench players.

Ally Wilson dished a perfect pass to Alicia Froling who completed the lay-up just before the three-quarter time buzzer to extend the margin to 71-50.

Youngster Sophia Locandro, who’s only recently returned from injury, got the crowd to its feet not long after the break with a three-pointer.

Locandro hit another with two minutes remaining, while New Zealand debutante Ritorya Tamilo had the bench up and about with her basket in the final minute.

Bendigo’s bench combined for a staggering 52 points in an exciting sign for the team’s depth heading into the business end of the season.

The Spirit are back in action at Red Energy Arena on Sunday against Canberra amid a hectic schedule of five games in 14 days.