|STAR OF THE GAME
Sutton-Brown's team-high 16 points on 7-of-12 shooting to go with three rejections sparked the Fever to a bounce back win.
Whittington put up a career-best 10 points without missing a shot to give the Fever the bench production it's been missing.
“We came out with a great start tonight. We played with a lot more effort and energy all game long. We must have this going into the playoffs. We struggled defending the three in the first half, but corrected that at halftime. Khadijah Whittington made a significant contribution tonight. She is the energy bunny. I’m very pleased with the way Tammy Sutton-Brown ran the floor. Our starters and our bench seemed much more focused tonight. We had a 40 minute high energy game. Sunday we will be playing for momentum and our fans.”
On The Last Two Games Of The Season:
“We want to use these last two games to build some momentum for the playoffs. We want to use these games like practices, execute our offense and to get better on defense.”
Points in the paint:
Fever 38, Liberty 20
Fever 12, Liberty 14
Fever 6, Liberty 2
Points off turnovers:
Fever 14, Liberty 9
Fever 48, Liberty 40
Fever 26, Liberty 19
INDIANAPOLIS -- Tammy Sutton-Brown scored 16 points to lead the Indiana Fever to a 74-59 victory over the New York Liberty on Thursday night.
Tan White had 13 points, Khadijah Whittington scored 10 and Tamika Catchings added 10 points and eight rebounds for Indiana (16-17), which beat New York at home for the 11th straight time in the regular season. The Liberty haven't won at Indianapolis since July 19, 2002.
Jessica Davenport finished with 12 points and Erlana Larkins scored nine for the Liberty (18-14), who played without Janel McCarville (back spasms) for the second straight game and Tiffany Jackson (stress fracture) for the seventh time in a row.
Third-place New York began the night 1 1/2 games behind Detroit and Connecticut in the Eastern Conference. The Liberty close the season with games at Chicago on Friday and at home against the Shock on Sunday.
Indiana, which has secured the fourth and final playoff spot, finishes the regular season at home against Phoenix on Sunday.
The Fever jumped out to a 20-3 lead on Whittington's jumper late in the first quarter before settling for a 38-27 halftime advantage. New York trimmed the deficit by hitting 6-of-8 3-point attempts in the half.
Indiana pushed an 11-point third-quarter lead to 64-49 on White's 3-pointer with 6 minutes left in the game.
The Fever has now won 11 straight games vs. the Liberty at Conseco Fieldhouse.
With tonight's win, the Fever has clinched an outright win in the season series with New York for the sixth consecutive season. Since winning just one of nine games against the Liberty in its first three seasons, the Fever has won 18 of 23 games vs. New York.
Indiana shot a season-high 48.4 percent from the floor tonight and the Fever is 6-0 when shooting at least 45 percent from the floor in 2008.
With her two offensive rebounds tonight, Ebony Hoffman has claimed 90 offensive boards this season and becomes just the third player (along with Natalie Williams & Tamika Catchings) in Fever history to record 90+ offensive rebounds in a single season. Hoffman's total leads the WNBA in 2008.
Hoffman's eight points tonight included her 22nd 3-pt FG of the season (22-53), and her second of the last six games.
With her five assists tonight, Katie Douglas leads the Fever in that department for the 13th time in 2008, more than any other player on the team.
Khadijah Whittington's 10 points off the bench are her career-high, topping the six points she had in two previous games this season.
The Fever's 38 points in the paint tonight represents its most since scoring 42 points in the paint vs. Connecticut, 7/5. Indiana's 38-20 edge in the paint tonight snaps a streak of straight games in which the Fever had been outscored in the paint. Indiana has outscored its opponent in the paint just nine times in 2008 and boasts a record of 6-3 in those games.
Including four apiece from Tully Bevilaqua and Katie Douglas, the Fever had 11 steals tonight, its 19th game of double-digit thefts in 2008.
The Fever had four players with at least three assists and the team totaled 18 assists. In the last three games, the Fever has averaged 20.3 apg. Heading into the game at Atlanta, 9/8, Indiana was averaging less than 14 apg (13.96), the lowest mark in the league.
New York is the 12th different Indiana opponent to have 20 or turnovers this season. The Liberty committed 21 miscues and the Fever capitalized on those for 14 points. Indiana had just 13 turnovers and the Liberty scored just nine points off Indiana's mistakes.
After scoring no more than seven points in any of her first 10 appearances, the Liberty's Jessica Davenport scored in double figures for the second straight game with her team-high 12 points tonight.
New York's 21 turnovers were one off its most this season, while its total of eight assists represent a season-low.