Canberra’s Marianna Tolo top-scored for the Capitals with 19 points in the series decider. (AAP: Lukas Coch)
The Canberra Capitals have won their ninth Women’s National Basketball League championship after completing a stunning second-half comeback against the Southside Flyers.
- The Canberra Capitals have beaten the Southside Flyers 71-68 to become back-to-back WNBL champions
- The victory marks the Capitals’ ninth championship
- The team’s French star, Olivia Epoupa, was named most valuable player of the finals
Canberra was down by 10 points at half-time, having earlier trailed by 16 points, but outscored the Flyers 21-9 in the third quarter before holding their nerve in a tight tussle down the stretch to become back-to-back champions.
The lead changed hands several times in the final quarter and it took a Kia Nurse three-pointer with 21 seconds left on the clock to put the Capitals back into the lead and set up the 71-68 win in front of a raucous home crowd of 4,481 at the AIS Arena.
The Capital’s French point guard Olivia Epoupa was tireless throughout the match, collecting 16 points, 11 assists and seven rebounds, and was awarded the Rachael Sporn Medal as the most valuable player of the finals.
Kellie Abrams: “9 Flags!! Winning Culture #WNBL20 #wnblgf #wnbl @UCCapitals @WNBL #uccapitals”
Flyers guard Rebecca Cole proved impossible to contain in the first half and ended the game with 23 points.
Centre Marianna Tolo top-scored for the Capitals with 19 points and 12 rebounds.
The win delivered the Capitals the title in the best-of-three finals series after they edged the Flyers 82-80 in Melbourne on Sunday.
The Capitals’ Kia Nurse (right) tussles with the Flyers’ Aimie Clydesdale (left) during the finals match. (AAP: Lukas Coch)