Spirit stars urge city to get behind team

CALL FOR SUPPORT: Bendigo's Gabe Richards, Tessa Lavey and Chelsea Aubry. Picture: JODIE DONNELLAN

CALL FOR SUPPORT: Bendigo's Gabe Richards, Tessa Lavey and Chelsea Aubry. Picture: JODIE DONNELLAN

AS THE preparation for the Bendigo Spirit's goal of a WNBL three-peat, a trio of its stars are calling on the city to again throw its support behind the team. 

The Spirit's season tips-off in just under two months with Gabe Richards, Tessa Lavey and Chelsea Aubry encouraging fans to become members for the upcoming season.

Aubry said the fans always gave the team a lift. 

"When you are in the fourth quarter and you are tired and you hear people cheering, it gives you something extra," she said.  

"They are like the sixth person out there."

Richards said the noise that the crowd can produce is intimidating for other teams.

"Our crowds have been growing significantly since we started and it is awesome to play in front of a really big crowd," she said. 

Richards, a WNBL All-Star five, said it was good to see most of her team-mates re-sign with the Spirit. 

"It says a lot about the team and should say a lot about Bendigo that so many of the girls have stayed on," she said. 

"A lot of the girls have made the move to Bendigo and have stayed here."

Richards, Lavey and new recruit Belinda Snell recently returned home from the Opals' tour of Europe. 

"Being a part of the Opals was awesome," Richards said. 

"It was really exciting to be a part of, we got to go to three different countries in two weeks and play six different games."

Richards said the Spirit trio would find out in two weeks if they have been selected to represent Australia at the FIBA World Championships later this month. 

"If we don't make it, we will have Spirit preparation, so it will be non-stop from here on in, no matter where we are," she said.  

A Bendigo Spirit adult membership costs $150 and includes entry to 11 home games and several other Spirit memorabilia. 

A concession costs $125 and a child is $100. 

For more membership packages and to become a member visit www.bendigospirit.com.au 

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