The Indiana Fever visited New York for its fourth and final matchup against the Liberty this season. In the Liberty’s final home game of 2019, the team lost to Indiana, 86-81, despite leading for three quarters.
Tina Charles led New York with 19 points and 11 rebounds, her eighth double-double of the season. She shot 9-of-23 from the field and added four assists to the Liberty effort.
In the first half, the teams began by trading baskets before New York went on a run to outscore Indiana 22-17 in the first quarter. Indiana eventually cut an eight-point Liberty lead to one point midway through the second quarter.
Back-to-back baskets for Marine Johannes with 3:02 remaining in the first half once again extended New York’s lead to a seven-point advantage. The Liberty went into the locker room up six points at the half.
Tina Charles opened the second half scoring five points in the first two minutes. An and one three point shot by Kia Nurse and a free throw by Charles gave New York a ten-point lead.
Indiana chipped away at New York’s lead before the visiting team took the lead midway through the third quarter.
A three-point goal by Marine Johannes with 4:24 remaining in the third, gave the Liberty a four-point boost ahead of the Fever. The Liberty built upon that lead, going on a 8-2 run before Indiana cut it down to six. Thanks to a three-point shot by New York guard Brittany Boyd, the home team ended the third quarter up nine points.
With 2:12 remaining, Tierra McCowan missed one of two free throws, putting Indiana down only one point. A made basket by Candice Dupree followed by a strong drive and layup by Kelsey Mitchell gave Indiana the lead back and put New York down three points with one minute remaining.
Out of a timeout with 33.2 seconds remaining in the game, Bria Hartley was called for an offensive foul, giving Indiana the possession with 28.6 left in the game.
Candice Dupree connected on one-of-two free throws with 23.4. The Liberty were unable to dig out of the deficit and lost, 81-86.
UP NEXT: New York heads to Atlanta tomorrow to play in its final game of the 2019 season against the Dream on Sunday, September 8 at 4 p.m. ET.
- New York shot 44% from the field and 36.4% from beyond the arc.
- Tina Charles led New York with 19 points and 11 rebounds, her eighth double-double of the season. She shot 9-of-23 from the field and added four assists to the Liberty effort.
- French guard Marine Johannes was the team’s second leading scorer, adding 16 points on 5-of-12 shooting from the field and 2-of-6 from beyond the arc. She also had a career high seven assists.
- Rebecca Allen was the only other Liberty player to score in double figures adding 11 points on 5-of-9 from the field.
- Kia Nurse hit her 100th career three-point field goal tonight, finishing with a total of 101. She finished the game 2-of-3 from deep.
- The New York bench contributed 43 points, more than half of the team’s scoring.
- Indiana scored the game’s final 14 points to win their third game in the last five and stay at .500 (6-6) since the All-Star Break.
- Kelsey Mitchell shot 9-of-17 with three 3-pointers for a game-high 22 points. Her 70 3-pointers for the season match her rookie total and are fourth in club history for a single season.
- Teaira McCowan finished with a franchise-record fifth consecutive double-double. With 14 points and 13 rebounds, she averages a double-double since June 19.
- McCowan’s 296 season rebounds are second in Fever history, just eight from breaking the Indiana record of 303 (Erlana Larkins, 2014). She ranks seventh in WNBA history for a rookie.
- Candice Dupree had 17 points to pull with 11 points of passing Katie Smith (6,452) as the fifth-leading career scorer in league history. Dupree has 6,442 career points.
- Erica Wheeler finished with 6 points, 6 assists and 4 steals.
New York Liberty Quotes
Coach Katie on tonight’s game
“We have to play better defense. If we’re not able to score, they shouldn’t be able to score. We also have to move the basketball and play better screens and put the ball in the hole.”
Coach Katie on her second season with the NY Liberty
“I thought some of the personnel changes were positive. Some of our new players played well. I thought we played harder and more consistent. Defense and rebounding is something we have to work on, and we’re not able to execute that in-game.”
Coach Katie’s thoughts on Han against McCowan
“It was decent. I thought it was a little harder for her tonight. McCowan is a tough matchup. Tonight, wasn’t her night—that’s all”.
Coach Katie on Marine Johannes
“She’s a playmaker. I still want her to look to score. She had several opportunities in the third and fourth quarter. I think her vision and ability to get around traps is good, and sets good timing.”
Tina Charles on tonight’s game
“We battled. I thought Marine had a really great game. We had some lapses; we traded baskets. It didn’t help that we only had seven points in the fourth quarter— that hurt us tremendously.”
Charles on mindset going into final game of the season
“We’re just trying to get a win; I think that’s the biggest thing. [We’re] just trying to get better at the things that Katie mentioned after the game.”
Rebecca Allen on team’s effort
“I thought we fought hard, tonight.”
Indiana Fever Quotes
Coach Pokey Chatman on team defense
“I think they [the Liberty] had several points in the fourth quarter and they had so much momentum going into the half, third quarter they had 25 so we said that’s not going to get it done, let’s try and hold them to 14, and then we held them to 7, and I say that because Kennedy Burke and Tiffany Mitchell were out for a long portion of that. It was small ball, but we were still able to be disruptive.”
Coach Pokey Chatman on team effort
“I thought some key people made some key reads and plays, not just the points by Kelsey Mitchell, but the steals and assists by Wheeler, Candice had clutch baskets, and that’s what it’s going to take when you have the end of the season, you’re grinding and people are injured.”
Coach Pokey Chatman on the season and league parity
“They’re going to start thinking about the five or six games that were one possession because that’s what athletes do, but I hope they step back and understand that the teams that they’re going against, the players who were down, and it’s a matter of what this league is about. On any given day, twelve can beat one or vice versa, and you have to be ready.”
Candice Dupree opening statements
“We just picked it up defensively, they scored entirely too much in the first half. They went into the second half with forty-nine points. We picked up defensively which led to better offense and good ball movement.”
Dupree further comments
“We are not trying to go into the offseason with anymore loses, we are just trying to grow and get better as a unit.”
Dupree on Sunday’s matchup
“[We want to] finish off the season strong with a win and go out on a high note.”
Kelsey Mitchell opening comments
“We kind of weathered the storm and stayed poised. We knew they were going to go on a run, they are a really good team with veteran and top-notch players.”
Mitchell on team win
“It means a lot. It shows where our growth has stemmed from beginning to end.”
Kelsey on next opponent
“We just want to win; Connecticut is a very good team.”
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