On Saturday, the New York Liberty (1-0) defeated the Connecticut Sun (0-1), 81-79, in their 2022 home opener. With tonight’s win, the Liberty snapped their nine-game losing streak against the Sun. The Liberty’s last win against the Sun came on July 11th, 2018, in a 79-76 victory at Connecticut.
At Barclays Center, the Liberty finished on 47.5% (28-59) shooting from the field, 40% (10-25) from three, and 71.4% (15-21) at the free throw line.
Up Next: The New York Liberty will travel to Chicago to take on the reigning WNBA Champions on Wednesday, May 11 at 8 p.m. ET.
Q1: Connecticut went on a 12-3 run between the 9:10 and the 4:27 marks in the opening period en route to 19-12 lead at the end of ten minutes.
Q2: From the 4:22 mark to the 0:27 mark in the quarter, the Liberty went on a 16-2 run to go into half time with an eight-point, 38-30 lead. The duo of Sabrina Ionescu and Natasha Howard combined to score 20 of the team’s 26 points in the period.
Q3: The Sun rode 16-2 run over the last 3:37 of the quarter to take one-point lead enter the final period.
Q4: Connecticut continued their third-quarter run in into the final period, extending it to a 23-7 stretch between the 3:37 mark in the third and the 6:17 mark in the fourth. After Sabrina Ionescu tied the game with 3:51 left in the fourth and gave the team a one-point lead at the line with an and-one opportunity, the Liberty went on an 8-4 run that was capped with a Jocelyn Willoughby layup at 1:53 in the fourth.
Four Liberty players scored in double figures in tonight’s game (Ionescu, Howard, Whitcomb, Willoughby).
Sabrina Ionescu dropped 13 of her 25 points in the second period, tying her highest single-quarter scoring total of 13 points against the Fever on May 14th, 2021; also last season’s opener. In the same period, she accounted for 69.2% of the team’s points between her 13 points and the five points she created via her two second-quarter assists. Ionescu finished with a stat line of 25 points, six assists, and four rebounds on 55.6% (10-18) shooting, including 50% (3-6) from deep and a perfect 100% (2-2) from the free throw line.
With her three made triples on seven attempts, Natasha Howard eclipsed her previous highs in both categories as member of the Liberty. In the second period, she and Sabrina Ionescu combined to scored 20 of the Liberty’s 26 points. On the evening, Howard scored 16 points and added six rebounds, three assists, and two blocks.
In her 150th career game, Sami Whitcomb scored 15 points on an efficient 50% (4-8) shooting from the field, including 33.3% (2-6) from beyond the three-point arc. Whitcomb also totaled five rebounds, five assists, and three steals.
After missing the entirety of the 2021 campaign due to injury, Jocelyn Willoughby stepping into the starting lineup and tallied 13 points and five rebounds in her return. Her two clutch rebounds with 24.4 seconds and 12.6 seconds remaining in the final period helped the Liberty take a 80-76 lead that put the contest on ice.
The Sun finished with five double-digit scorers (A. Thomas, J. Jones, J. Thomas, B. Jones, Carrington).
Alyssa Thomas starred for the Connecticut, finishing with 25 points and seven rebounds on 62.5% shooting from the floor.