Townsville Fire have turned it on in the second half to beat Bendigo Spirit 82-63 in the major semi-final to progress through to the WNBL grand final and grab the home ground advantage.
The minor premiers got the jump early and went out to a 22-9 lead but Bendigo were able to pin them back and went into half time in front 39-38.
There must have been a pretty good pep talk at half time by Fire coach Chris Lucas, because the girls came out firing. Townsville outscored Bendigo 44-24 in the second half and limited them to just seven points in the third quarter.
Townsville shared the scoring duties around: Francs 20, Cumming 15 and Newley 14. Batkovic contributed with 12 points after spending the majority of the first quarter off with an ankle injury.
Bendigo forward Kelsey Griffin was good for them in the first half with 19 points but was restricted to just two points in the second half to finish with 21 points. Griffin led the way for rebounds chalking up nine.
The Spirit, who are chasing the elusive three-peat, will now host the Sydney Uni Flames – who defeated Dandenong in the elimination final – in the preliminary final next Sunday.