INDIANAPOLIS, IND. – SEPT. 27, 2015 – The Indiana Fever came from behind to win game two of the WNBA Eastern Conference Finals, 70-64, on Sunday afternoon at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
These two teams will meet for a winner take all game three on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden at 7 p.m.
The Liberty led by as many as 18 points on Sunday afternoon, but the Fever used a frenzied comeback, outscoring New York 41-20 in the second half, to steal the win and prolong the series.
New York never trailed until Shenise Johnson buried a 3-pointer with 2:41 remaining in the game to put Indiana in front 60-59.
That shot came as a part of a 17-4 run, as on the next Fever possession, Marissa Coleman was good on a corner triple to make it a four-point Indiana lead.
New York dug in, cutting it to one as Tanisha Wright was able to get a 3-pointer of her own to fall with just 2:14 to play. The Liberty was able to get a stop, and then regained a 65-64 advantage as Epiphanny Prince knocked down a pair at the line.
Indiana was able to retake the lead as Tamika Catchings dropped a 13-foot jumper and Wright was whistled for an offensive foul on consecutive possessions, the second of which led to a technical foul assessed to head coach Bill Laimbeer. Indiana iced the game by making all five of its foul shots over the final 15.9.
Tina Charles continued to prove why she was one of the best players in the game, scoring 25 points with 10 boards to pace New York. Prince joined her in double figures with 12 points.
After getting 40.5 points off the bench over the last two games, the Liberty reserves accounted for just 10, with Essence Carson leading the way scoring seven points and Sugar Rodgers adding three.
For New York, it was a rare loss when winning the turnover battle. The Liberty forced 13 Indiana turnovers, which led to 19 points, but a majority of those came during the first half of play. Indiana turned it over only four times in the second half with New York scoring two points off of those giveaways.
The Fever comeback actually began with a 3-pointer that came just seconds before halftime, which cut New York’s lead down to 15. That was the start of what turned into a 13-2 run that lasted into the third quarter, enabling Indiana to draw within 11 heading into the final period.
Another 13-2 run over the first 4:10 of the fourth quarter allowed the Fever to tie the game 55-55, the first tie since it was 2-2.
New York Liberty Notes
- Tina Charles led New York with 25 points and 10 rebounds for her second double-double of the 2015 playoffs.
- The Liberty let an 18-point lead slip away, the largest lead given up this season and just the second time New York saw a double-digit lead fail to turn into a win.
- New York lost when leading heading into the fourth quarter for just the second time, both of which game at Indiana; the Fever erased a seven-point fourth-quarter deficit in the regular season finale on Sept. 13.
- The Liberty is now 0-6 all-time at Indiana in the playoff and lost all four games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse this season.
- New York averaged 40.5 bench points in its last two wins, but saw just 10 points come from the bench on Sunday.
- After shooting 50.0 percent from the field in the first half, New York hit on just 24.1 percent of its attempts from the field in the second (7-of-29).