The New York Liberty (7-26) gave the Seattle Storm a battle on Friday evening, but the Storm ultimately pulled out an 85-77 victory. The Liberty will look to end their season on a high note when they face the Phoenix Mercury (19-14) on Sunday at the Talking Stick Resort Arena, with the tip scheduled for 6:00 p.m.
Tina Charles’ 20.1 points per game rank seventh the league (as of 8/18).
Charles’ 7.1 rebounds per game are slot her 11th in the league (as of 8/18).
Charles ranks top-20 in the league in blocks per game (as of 8/18).
Kia Nurse’s ranks top-10 among rookies with 8.5 points per game (as of 8/18).
Nurse is shooting 86.8 percent from the free throw line, good for sixth in the league (as of 8/18).
Brittany Boyd’s 5.2 assists per contest rank fifth in the WNBA (as of 8/18).
Boyd is top-20 in the league in steals per game with 1.2 (as of 8/18).
Bria Hartley ranks top-15 in the league with 3.6 assists per game (as of 8/18).
The Liberty and Mercury both rank top-five in the WNBA in assists per game (as of 8/18).
The last time these two teams met, Diana Taurasi hit seven of her 11 looks from behind the arc to lead the Mercury to victory. Sugar Rodgers, who is coming off a fourth quarter in which she drained four from deep, will look to match Taurasi shot for shot from the shooting guard position.
On June 26, 2018, Diana Taurasi scored a game-high 27 points, including seven makes from deep, as the Mercury bested the Liberty, 83-69.
The Mercury never trailed in the matchup, as they built themselves a solid cushion in the first quarter by outscoring the Liberty 30-16.
Four New York players reached double figures, but Tina Charles was the leading scorer with 12 points. The forward added eight rebound as well.
STOKES MOVING ON UP
Kiah Stokes secured her first double-double of the season against the Storm on Friday, grabbing a career-high 15 rebounds in addition to a season-high 10 points. With her seventh board, the fourth-year pro surpassed Teresa Weatherspoon to move into sixth in franchise history on the glass. She is the second player to surpass the current Liberty staff member this season, joining Kia Vaughn.
Tina Charles made her return to the Liberty lineup against the Storm after a one-game absence, and the veteran picked up where she left off, scoring a team-high 21 points. It was her fifth straight appearance with at least 20, and what is most impressive about that streak is her efficiency; she has shot 50 percent or above from the field in each of those contests.
SECOND HALF SLIP
The Liberty currently find themselves in a season-long 12-game skid, but they have fought admirably in each of those matchups. In nine games across that span, they have held a second-half lead, but to see it eventually slip away.
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