The New York Liberty (6-14) nabbed a much-needed victory on Wednesday, beating the Connecticut Sun with a three at the buzzer. They will look to make it two in a row when they host the Chicago Sky (7-14) on Sunday afternoon.
Tina Charles’ 20.1 points per game rank fourth in the league (as of 7/13), and she is one of just five players averaging 20 or more.
Charles’ 7.2 rebounds per game are tied for ninth in the league (as of 7/13).
Kia Nurse’s ranks top-10 among rookies with 8.3 points per game (as of 7/13).
Brittany Boyd’s 4.7 assists per contest are good for fifth in the WNBA (as of 7/13).
Boyd checks in at 13th in the league in steals per game with 1.25 (as of 7/13).
Bria Hartley ranks top-20 in the league with 3.6 assists per game (as of 7/13).
In three matchups against the Sky this season, the Liberty are dishing out 21.7 assists per game, over two more than their season average.
The Liberty are scoring 90.7 points per game against the Sky this season, more than 13 points above their season average.
Allie Quigley is averaging 21.3 points per game against the Liberty this season.
The Sky are the lone team the Liberty face four times this season.
Chicago has dropped five of their last six, including the loss to New York on 6/29.
When two of the top-five facilitators in the WNBA face off, the matchup is sure to have an impact on which team comes out on top. In two head-to-head battles this season, Brittany Boyd and Courtney Vandersloot have been standout performers. Boyd has stuffed the stat sheet with 12.0 points, 5.5 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 2.5 steals a game, while Vandersloot has averaged 17.0 points, 8.0 assists and 5.0 rebounds per contest (as of 7/12).
On July 1, 2018, a Tina Charles putback with 16 seconds left in overtime gave the Liberty the lead for good as they escaped with a 97-94 victory over the Sky in Chicago.
The Sky used an 8-0 run to take the lead with 34 seconds left, but Charles made sure the Liberty captured their second overtime win of the season. She led New York with 28 points.
Four other Liberty players joined Charles in double figures. Allie Quigley paced the Sky with 28 points.
DOWN TO THE WIRE
The Liberty and Sky certainly have a penchant for drama when they face off; all three contests between the two teams this season have been settled by four points or less. In the last matchup between the two teams, the Liberty secured their second overtime victory of the season.
FEEL THE PRESSURE
The Liberty are coming off one of their best defensive performances of the season in their victory over the Sun. Connecticut’s 76 points were the fewest by an opponent since Atlanta scored 72 (6/19), and the Liberty’s five blocks were one short of their season-high. New York will need to maintain the defensive intensity against Chicago, who is averaging 92.3 points per game against them this season.
CAN’T WIN ONE WITHOUT ONE
After a 14-point performance against the Sun that featured the game-winning three at the buzzer, the Liberty are now 6-2 when Shavonte Zellous scores in double figures. The guard registered 12 points in New York’s victory over Chicago this season but finished with a combined four points in the two defeats.
THE SKY’S THE LIMIT
Ranking fourth in the league in scoring, Tina Charles rarely has an off night, but the forward has played especially well against the Sky this season. In the three matchups, Charles has averaged 23.7 points in 32.3 minutes per game, shooting 81.3 percent from the charity stripe and hitting a three in each contest.
AT HER BEST
Kia Vaughn missed the season’s first matchup against the Sky fulfilling her obligations overseas, but she has made her presence known in her two appearances since. Against Chicago this season, the veteran is averaging 10.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game. In the most recent matchup, she notched her first double-double of the season while holding the Sky’s starting center, Stefanie Dolson, to a 4-of-13 shooting performance.
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