Canada’s Kia Nurse helps Canberra to Australian women’s league title


Canada’s Kia Nurse. (Jessica Hill/AP)

CANBERRA., Australia — Canada’s Kia Nurse had 12 points and three assists to help the University of Canberra Capitals to their eighth WNBL Championship, with a 93-73 victory over the Adelaide Lightning.

Kelsey Griffin led Canberra with 29 points, 15 rebounds, four assists and two blocks in front of a crowd of 4,820.

Nurse joined Canberra in Australia’s women’s league after her WNBA season for the New York Liberty, where she averaged 9.1 points off the bench. In between the two pro leagues, the 22-year-old from Hamilton played for Canada at the women’s World Cup in September, where the Canadians finished seventh.

Nurse tweeted after the victory: "WNBL CHAMPIONS!!!!!! Whaaaaaat thank you ↕UCCapitals for giving me an opportunity to play with an amazing group of women!!!!"

Canberra’s victory marked an incredible late-season run. They won 13 of their last 14 games, their only defeat was a one-point loss.

Nurse finished second in voting for the Rachael Sporn Grand Final MVP award, which went to Griffin.

Most WNBA players spend their off-seasons playing in other leagues abroad, such as in Australia or Asia, partly out of financial necessity — the average salary in the WNBA last season was about US$71,600.


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