The Connecticut Sun entered Wednesday’s game against the New York Liberty on a three-game win streak, and their luck continued Wednesday afternoon.
Connecticut now is 9-1 at home this season following Wednesday’s 70-63 victory over the Liberty at Mohegan Sun Arena. The Sun enter the All-Star break tied for the best record in the WNBA.
Jonquel Jones recorded her ninth double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds against New York. Jasmine Thomas led all scorers with 18 points, with Courtney Williams (13) also reaching double-figures for the Sun.
Connecticut improved to 13-6 with the win, while New York fell to 8-11 with the loss.
Here’s how it all went down:
PG: Courtney Williams
SG: Jasmine Thomas
SF: Shekinna Stricklen
PF: Alyssa Thomas
C: Jonquel Jones
SUN RISES EARLY
It didn’t take long for the Sun to break things open.
After trading leads with New York early, Connecticut went up six-points through the first three minutes.
The Sun eventually took an eight-point lead on the backs of Kristine Anigwe and Jasmine Thomas. But New York refused to give up and cut Connecticut’s lead to three just seconds before the end of the quarter.
The Sun took an 18-15 lead into the second. Jasmine Thomas paced Connecticut with five points through the first 10 minutes, notching her 300th career steal along the way.
LIBERTY FIGHTS BACK
New York would strike back in the second.
After starting the quarter down three, the Liberty quickly went up five points following a 13-0 run over two-minutes.
The Sun struggled to defend the Liberty early in the second, allowing players like Rebecca Allen to get to the rim uncontested during New York’s lengthy run. But a few key blocks by Jones helped keep the Sun within striking distance.
Connecticut finally broke through halfway through the quarter, going on a 9-0 run of its own to tie things up at 27 apiece.
Despite little patience from Connecticut’s offense, the two squads kept things close through the final four minutes of the half. New York hung on to a three-point lead heading into halftime, leading the Sun 39-36.
The Liberty outscored the Sun 24-18 in the second.
A TIGHT GAME
Just three points separated the two squads heading into the second half, and the game remained tight throughout the third quarter.
Shekinna Stricklen got the scoring started early, bringing the Sun within one on a jumper from the wing.
Jones followed that up with a jumper of her own, giving the Sun a one-point lead.
New York and Connecticut continued to trade leads, but a Rachael Banham 3-pointer sparked a six-point run for the Sun to end the quarter.
The two squads combined for just 21 points in the third.
BATTLE TO THE FINISH
Connecticut led New York 50-46 to start the final quarter, but the Liberty wasted no time tying things up at 51.
Jasmine Thomas and Morgan Tuck helped the Sun take back the lead, making it a five-point game with seven minutes.
Connecticut maintained a healthy lead for much of the fourth, aided by some stellar play from Jones and Alyssa Thomas late in the game.
New York made things interesting with a few big late-game buckets, at one point cutting the Sun’s lead to three. But the Liberty missed several key free throws with less than five minutes left, allowing Connecticut to hang on to the lead for good.
Jones helped put things away with a beautiful shot from beyond the arc.
Connecticut scored another eight points before the final buzzer, holding New York to just four points over the last four minutes of the game.
And just like that, the first half of the Sun’s season came to a close.
PLAY OF THE GAME
Have yourself a game, Jasmine.
Connecticut will take on the Chicago Sky at Mohegan Sun Arena on July 30 following the WNBA All-Star break. Tip-off is slated for 7 p.m. ET.
Thumbnail photo via Connecticut Sun