NEW YORK, N.Y. – SEPT. 13, 2016 – The New York Liberty fell to the Washington Mystics 75-62 on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden for Fan Appreciation Night presented by JP Morgan Chase Women on the Move.
Tina Charles posted her league-leading 20th double-double of the season, finishing with 22 points and 11 rebounds, which also allowed her to maintain her league lead in scoring (21.5 ppg) and rebounding (9.9 rpg) as she attempts to become just the 3rd player in league history to finish first in scoring and rebound average in the same season.
Shavonte Zellous also finished in double figures for a short-handed New York (21-12) squad, scoring 11 points with four rebounds.
While guard Tanisha Wright returned to action for the first time since sustaining a knee injury at San Antonio on August 26, the Liberty was without Epiphanny Prince (illness), Kiah Stokes (hip) and Shoni Schimmel (concussion).
Washington (13-19) started the game on fire, grabbing a 17-2 lead 6:28 into the game on a Stefanie Dolson 3-pointer; Dolson finished with a game-high 23 points on the night.
At that point the Liberty was shooting just 1-of-10 from the field, but a Charles 20-footer ended the scoring drought and sparked a 15-2 Liberty run that overlapped into the 2nd quarter.
New York was never able to take the lead, and sharp shooting from 3-point range allowed the Mystics to rebuild a double-digit advantage as Ally Malott hit back-to-back treys and Tiara Ruffin-Pratt capped the big run with a third-straight triple.
Washington led by 12 at the break and extended the lead to 18 late in the 3rd quarter. New York’s comeback saw it draw within 72-62 with 1:24 to play, but the Liberty could not get any closer in the final moments.
New York returns to action for its 2016 regular season finale at Chicago on Friday, Sept. 16. Tipoff is at 8:30 PM (ET) and the game will be broadcast on MSG Network.
• The Liberty was without Epiphanny Prince (illness) and Kiah Stokes (hip) ad Shoni Schimmel (concussion)
• Tanisha Wright returned to action after missing the previous five games with a knee injury sustained at San Antonio on Aug. 26
• Sugar Rodgers scored her 1,000th career point in the 1st quarter
• Liberty associate head coach Katie Smith acted as head coach for New York during the game. Head coach Bill Laimbeer was on the bench for the game.
• Tina Charles recorded her 20th double-double of the season with 22 points and 11 rebounds
• Brittany Boyd finished with 6 assists and has recorded at least six assists in six-straight games and had 3 steals for at least three steals in four-straight games.
• It was just the fourth game this season Sugar Rodgers failed to hit a 3-pointer, the Liberty fell to 1-3 when Rodgers does not convert from downtown
• New York fell to 4-11 when trailing after the first quarter
• Shavonte Zellous made her first start of the season for the Liberty
• New York has lost back-to-back games for the first time since May 31