Spirit victory rocked by Penaluna injury

BENDIGO Spirit's emphatic victory in Saturday night's basketball clash at Dandenong was soured by a knee injury to centre Elyse Penaluna.

The in-form Penaluna was hurt in the first quarter in Rangers territory.

Spirit won the second quarter, 30-13, and went on to win the contest 85-67.

It was Bendigo's ninth consecutive win against the Dandenong Jayco Rangers.

Kelsey Griffin scored 17 of her 20 points in the first half and won eight rebounds.

Fellow import Chelsea Aubry added 16 points and eight boards in Bendigo's victory.

Dandenong went into this match without Olympian and WNBL All-Star Five member Jenna O’Hea.

Alice Kunek led Dandenong's attack on 13 points as Leilani Mitchell, 12, and Natalie Novosel, 10, reached double figures.

The Spirit led 23-18 at quarter-time, but a Kunek triple tied the scores early in the second term.

Griffin scored nine points in four minutes as Bendigo's lead hit double figures.

Aubry and Maddie Garrick were on target from beyond the three-point arc as Bendigo led 53-31 by half-time.

The Rangers opened the second half with the first two buckets, but Spirit replied with a 12-2.

An Aubry triple put the margin at 30.

Led by Clare Papavs, Dandenong’s bench fought hard to win the final stanza 20-13.

The Spirit is back home on Sunday to play Melbourne Boomers. Tip-off is at 2pm at Bendigo Stadium. 

Melbourne beat Dandenong by a point in Friday night's clash. 

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