Burrell brilliant as Capitals lower Spirit levels with maiden win

THE UC Capitals have finally claimed their first win of the 2022/23 WNBL season, taking down the Bendigo Spirit to the tune of seven points on Wednesday night.

After losing their first 10 games, the Capitals were able to get on the board with a gutsy win against a Spirit side that was looking like a championship contender at the start of the season. Instead, it was UC that fought tooth-and-nail to hold on for a result that seemed to elude it for so long in the opening 10 rounds.

The Capitals had a number of players stand up in order to get the win, including forward/guard Rae Burrell, with the import producing a season-best performance and leading her side offensively in the process.

UC Capitals (92) def. Bendigo Spirit (85)

Rae Burrell – 24 points, one rebound, two assists

A pure scorer, Burrell let her shots do the talking as she made the most of the opportunities created by the Capitals guards. The 22-year-old had an efficient night at the office, shooting 64 per cent from the field and punishing any space given by the Bendigo defence. Seven of her 11 shots found the bottom of the net, while she did some damage at the charity stripe too

Burrell has the capability to score at all three levels, often playing above her size and attacking the rim to find the net. Her mid-range shot was on point against the Spirit, working hard around the key and rising above the opposition to give herself the best look.

While Burrell did not take many looks from behind the arc, she made sure to make no mistake when she did fire off a triple. From three-point territory, the import went two from three, showcasing just how confident she was in her shooting motion.

Burrell’s willingness to drive inside and score at the rack drew success in two-fold, not only delivering close-range baskets, but also resulting in plenty of trips to the free throw line, where she went eight from 10. The Spirit defence was constantly caught out of position and forced to give up fouls with some ill-discipline.

Someone needed to step up for the Capitals to finally conjure an upset and Burrell was the one to put her hand up. She did not need a whole heap of the ball, but when she was given a good look, the WNBA rising star made no mistake, and should look to build on this performance in the coming weeks.

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