UNCASVILLE, CT – May 7, 2018 – In the New York Liberty’s first preseason game of the year, the Liberty fell 76-69 to the Dallas Wings, Monday evening at the Mohegan Sun. New York was paced by Marissa Coleman’s 14 points and benefitted from a 10-point production from rookie Kia Nurse.
“Our staff and players continuity are good.” First-year head coach Katie Smith began. “Despite the fact that we lost, this group competed.”
Despite both teams remaining in striking distance of one another for the large majority of the contest, both clubs still managed to credit double-digit leads over the other. The Liberty toted a 10-point lead at one point but the Wings boasted a 12-point advantage, when it mattered most, by the 4:32 mark of the fourth quarter, 69-57.
From that point on, Nurse went in to attack mode in an arduous effort to keep the Liberty in the game.
Smith continued. “Nurse is a really good basketball player and she is going to help us.”
The rookie hauled four rebounds, put in five makes at the charity stripe and cashed in on a layup all while committing just one turnover over the game’s final five-minute stretch to conclude her professional debut.
However, Coleman in her tenth season, showed promise as to what she can do for the Liberty.
Smith stated. “Coleman was a good pick up and we were able to see that tonight.”
The veteran’s team-high 14 points off the bench were tallied on 50-percent shooting from both the floor (6-of-12) and distance (2-of-4) which complimented a pair of rebounds and a steal.
Tina Charles registered seven points in an early seven-minute performance. The big was sidelined for the game’s second-half.
Each Lib that suited up saw time out on the floor. Lindsay Allen dropped seven points and two dimes in her starting performance while Sugar Rodgers also contributed eight points in large part to her two triples as a starter too. Reshanda Gray, Shavonte Zellous (4 pts, 4 asts), and Charles rounded out New York’s first five out.
Reserves, Mercedes Russell and Kelly Faris finished with six and five respective points.
Dallas was backed by Azura Stevens’ 19 points and nine rebounds as the rookie was the lone Wings player to end in double-figures. Skylar Diggins-Smith finished with six points and two boards.
The Liberty return to preseason action tomorrow, May 8 at the Mohegan Sun against the Los Angeles Sparks. Tip-off is slated for 5 p.m.