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(Photo by Brandon Koodish - Double G Media)

(Photo by Brandon Koodish – Double G Media)

The New York Liberty erased a 21-point 2nd half deficit, tying the game 86-86 with 1:06 to play, but lost to the Connecticut Sun 94-89 on Friday Night at The Garden. Tina Charles finished with a double-double of 20 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Liberty, one of five New York players to score in double figures.

The Connecticut Sun have been on fire lately. This was the team’s five straight win. The win also marked the Sun going up 2-0 in the season series against the Liberty. Sun’s Jonquel Jones, the team’s leading scorer this season, scored 21 points and grabbed seven rebounds. Jasmine Thomas led Connecticut in scoring for the game, totaling 23 points and five assists.

The Liberty Defensive Intensity Was a No Show

New York’s offense struggled, and the Sun’s offense prospered. The Sun entered Friday’s game as the WNBA’s best 3-point shooting team — they didn’t regress against the Liberty.

Connecticut shot 50 percent from the three-point line, making 12 threes – New York made 10. The New York Liberty simply could not check the Connecticut Sun in the first half, especially from the three-point line.

“They were shooting well so we put ourselves in a hole and we were able to get it back and tie the ball game,” Liberty center Tina Charles said

The Liberty allowed uncontested shots from the perimeter and even allowed the Sun (6-5) to win the battle of second chance points 21-4 though the overall rebound numbers were nearly even. Turnovers were a recurring issue.

“Giving up 28 points off of turnovers and giving them 21 points on the offensive rebounds was our undoing,” Liberty Head coach Bill Laimbeer said, “That’s what cost us the game.”

Welcome Back

Both Sun and Liberty,  had key players back from their overseas commitments. Epiphanny Prince chipped in 14 points off the bench, while Kia Vaughn added four to the Liberty’s score. For Connecticut, Alex Bentley brought instant offense off the bench with nine points in her 11 minutes of play.

New York Liberty Will Participate In The City’s Pride Parade 

The New York Liberty will be the first NYC sports franchise to participate in the city’s pride parade. New York players, coaches and front-office staff will be on the float rolling down Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue, ending in the West Village tomorrow afternoon. 

Shavonte Zellous is thrilled that the New York Liberty will have a float in Sunday’s pride parade.

“I’m excited. I haven’t been in a pride parade before, so I think I’m more excited than most,” said Zellous, a guard who wore rainbow-colored shoes Friday night for the Liberty’s pride game. “Especially with the stuff that happened in Orlando last year. I want to thank the [WNBA] and the Liberty for doing a thing like this. I think it will be a great turnout.”

What’s Next For The Liberty?

The Liberty opens a 4-game road trip at Washington on Thursday, June 29. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 PM.

Jason Cordner

Jason Cordner

Jason is the New York Liberty Beat Writer, Rutgers Football Beat Writer, and co-host of The Box Out, a basketball podcast for DoubleGSports.com.
Jason Cordner
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