SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – JUNE 11, 2016 – The New York Liberty used a 12-0 run in the fourth quarter to end its three-game road trip on a high note with a 90-75 victory over the San Antonio Stars on Saturday night at the AT&T Center.
The Liberty entered the fourth quarter with a slim 62-61 lead in what had been a close game all night before surging ahead for good.
Astou Ndor nailed a 3-pointer to give the Stars a 64-62 lead, but New York answered with back-to-back buckets in the paint, first a strong take from Kiah Stokes followed by a pretty Carolyn Swords bank shot, the start of what turned into that decisive run.
San Antonio proceeded to commit turnovers on three consecutive possessions, and the Liberty made them pay each time. Tina Charles found Shavonte Zellous on back-door cuts twice in a row, the second of which made it a 10-point lead, 74-64, for the first time.
Sugar Rodgers led the Liberty with 22 points, her fifth-career 20-point game and her third 20 point outing of the season. She also nailed three buckets from long-distance, and now has 24 makes from downtown this year.
Charles was right behind her with 21 points and 10 boards, her seventh double-double in nine games. She also dished out six dimes, leading the Liberty in assists for the fourth time in 2016; her 4.0 assists per game rank 9th in the WNBA.
Shavonte Zellous rounded out the double-digit scorers, finishing with 11 points, her fifth-straight outing with 10-plus points. Swin Cash narrowly missed out on a double-double, scoring eight points with 10 rebounds, as did Kiah Stokes, tallying eight points and 11 boards.
New York led by as many as 17 points down the stretch in the fourth quarter, a period in which it limited the Stars to just 14 points and 3-of-17 shooting from the field.
Bill Laimbeer stressed rebounding all night, and the Liberty finished with a 48-33 advantage on the glass. New York also dominated in the paint, outscoring the Stars 46-14 on the interior, its largest margin in the paint this year.
New York returns to action on Tuesday, June 14, when it welcomes the Dallas Wings to Madison Square Garden for the second time. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.
12-0 run 3 straight TO back-to-back backdoor cuts Charles to Zellous
• Following a Astou Ndour 3-pointer to open the 4th that gave San Antonio a 64-62 lead, the Liberty answered on a 12-0 run to take the first double-digit lead of the game.
• Sugar Rodgers notched the fifth 20-point game of her career and her third this season.
• Tina Charles scored 20 points for the fifth time this season. Charles also led the Liberty in assists for the fourth time, racking up six on the night. She is averaging 4.0 assists per game which ranks 9th in the league.
• Shavonte Zellous has now scored in double figures in five straight games for the Liberty.
• New York has won three-straight against the Stars for the first time since 2011, which was the last time it had back-to-back games at San Antonio. Just the second time in franchise history with consecutive road wins at San Antonio.
• The Liberty finished the game with a 46-14 advantage in the paint, its largest margin of the season. All five New York wins have come when it controlled the paint.