SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS – JUNE 10, 2016 – The New York Liberty wraps up a three-game Western Conference road swing against the San Antonio Stars on Saturday night at the AT&T Center in San Antonio. Tipoff is scheduled for 8 p.m. (ET) and the game will be broadcast on MSG Network.
The Liberty swept two games against the Stars last season, including a 73-45 win on the road, but prior to that San Antonio had won six straight in the series.
The Liberty had its two-game winning streak snapped by the unbeaten Los Angeles Sparks on Tuesday night at the Staples Center, 100-77. Shavonte Zellous led the Liberty offensively, finishing with 12 points. New York saw its bench account for 49 points, with three double-digit scorers.
Veteran forward Swin Cash on Tuesday morning announced via The Players’ Tribune that she will be retiring at the conclusion of the 2016 WNBA season. Cash, who is in her third season with the Liberty and 15th in the WNBA, ranks 14th all-time in scoring with 4,983 points and is 7th in games played with 453.
Shavonte Zellous has now scored in double figures in four straight games for New York, averaging 12.3 ppg over that stretch. She currently ranks third on the team overall, at 9.1 ppg so far this season.
Kiah Stokes ranks 3rd in the WNBA with 17 blocks this season, and has already moved up to 7th in New York Liberty history with 84 in her career. She is just two blocks shy of taking over sole possession of 6th place.
PLAYER TO WATCH
Tina Charles was held to season lows in points (7) and rebounds (3) against Los Angeles on Tuesday night, so she will be primed to bounce back in a big way when she hits the court on Saturday. Charles is averaging 19.6 points and 10.5 rebounds per game, and has posted six double-doubles this season.
Last year she was efficient in 24 minutes per game against the Stars, averaging 16.0 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. The Stars had no answer for her defensively as she shot .625 from the field in the two Liberty wins.
Controlling the paint has been critical for the Liberty this season, just as it was in 2015. New York has outscored 6-of-8 opponents in the paint, but the two times the Liberty has been outscored the team has lost both times. New York leads the league averaging 38.3 ppg on the interior, an average of 10.0 more per game than its opponents.
Defensively, once again the Liberty allow the fewest opportunities in the paint of any team in the league. New York ranks first in the WNBA , holding opponents to .459 (73-of-159) on shots inside of five feet.
New York sees a higher percentage of its field goal attempts from 6-to-10 feet from the rim than any other team in the WNBA, but the Liberty also converts on those shots at a higher percentage than a majority of the league. The Liberty shoots 16.4 percent of its attempts from that 6-10 foot range, but nails 43.8 percent of those field goals, fourth in the league.