Griffin returns from concussion, knocks out Canberra in WNBL

December 17, 2016

Kelsey Griffin basketball

Kelsey Griffin

Neither a concussion nor the Canberra Capitals could stop Kelsey Griffin of Eagle River.

After the Bendigo Spirit captain was diagnosed with a concussion after her second heat shot of the week, she returned to the court and delivered a double-double in a Herculean effort.

Griffin, of Chugiak High fame, scored 26 points and pulled down 10 rebounds as Bendigo beat Canberra 70-60 in Australia’s WNBL.

Not even her coaches thought she’d suit up last night – but there, back on the court after doctors cleared her return.

“Kelsey put ball under her arm and said ‘I’ll take you home,’” Bendigo coach Simon Pritchard told the Sydney Morning Herald.

“Kelsey just threw the team on her back and there were a few minutes there where she just couldn’t be stopped. Our offence broke down a few times during the game and she just willed her way to the basket and made plays.”

Bendigo improved to 10-5 on the season, with Griffin leading the way as usual.

The 6-foot-2 forward ranks second on the team in scoring [15.9] and rebounding [8.1] and leads the Spirit with 46 assists, 27 steals and 13 blocked shots.

Griffin is a former two-time Grand Finals MVP, yet Richards admitted that the Spirit sometimes lean on their all-star too often.

“To be honest I challenged the group the week earlier to not be so reliant on Kelsey so it would have been a really good exercise to play without her and force the others to stand up,” he told the newspaper.

“I think we have got the ability to do that but sometimes we sit back and defer to Kelsey. It may have cost us a loss as over the night Kelsey just ripped them apart, it was a real captain’s performance.”