CHARLOTTE STING 78, NEW YORK LIBERTY 66
WNBA.com Recap | Box Score
It came down to the final road game of the season, but the Sting finally found their touch away from home as they snapped their 16-game road losing streak, defeating the New York Liberty, 78-66, at Madison Square Garden. In the process, Charlotte won its second-straight game for the first time this season and defeated a legitimate WNBA playoff contender.
Still without the services of forward Tangela Smith, who missed her second straight game with a left knee bruise, the Sting turned to veterans Sheri Sam and Tammy Sutton-Brown. The two didn't disappoint, contributing 41 of the Sting's 78 points. Sam finished with 24 points to lead all scorers and also posted seven rebounds and four assists, while Sutton-Brown poured in 17 points, 13 of which came in the critical second half.
The Sting bench which sparkled in Charlotte's win over Detroit two days prior continued to shine, tallying 22 points in the victory.
Things seemed to go right for the Sting from the opening tip as they connected on their first two buckets to take a four-point lead. New York used a 10-2 run to build a five-point advantage, but the Sting quickly reeled them back in going on a 15-2 run to take an eight-point lead (28-20) with 9:36 left in the half. After the Liberty closed the gap to one with 7:10 remaining on the clock, the two teams went neck-and-neck the remainder of the way with New York holding a narrow one-point lead (36-35) at halftime.
Tammy Sutton-Brown opened the second half with a driving lay-up to give the Sting back the lead and spark a 9-2 run that gave the Sting a six-point advantage with 16:42 left in the game. New York did not go away quietly as they used an 8-0 run to build a four-point lead with 11:14 to go. With the Sting still trailing by four (58-54) with 8:23 left to go, Kelly Mazzante sank a three-pointer to spur a 9-0 run and give the Sting a five-point advantage with 6:01 remaining.
A driving lay-up by Vickie Johnson at the 4:34 mark pulled the Liberty to within three, but it would be their last field goal of the game as the Sting's defense held the Liberty without a field goal and forced them into three turnovers in the closing four minutes. Charlotte's defensive pressure enabled them to end the game on a 13-4 run and record their largest win of the season.
The Sting finished the game shooting an impressive 50.0 percent (30-60) from the field while holding the Liberty to just 37.3 percent (22-59).
Becky Hammon scored 20 for the Liberty in the loss, while Vickie Johnson added 16.
HEAD COACH MUGGSY BOGUES SAYS...
(On the game)
We're trying to get better as a basketball team. The ladies are accepting their roles and we're playing well. Tonight we stayed focus for, I'd say 39 minutes - there was one minute that got away from us. I just wish we had more basketball games to play.
INSIDE THE LOCKER ROOM
SHERI SAM (24 Pts, 7 Rebs, 4 Asts)
(On the game) We're trying to get better and build for next year. This is building a foundation so we can see what works and what doesn't. We've worked hard all year and it felt good to get our first win on the road, even if it is the last game of the season. Tonight's win is a good win - any win at the Garden is a big win. We deserved it.
|AUGUST 25, 2005
||STAR OF THE GAME
|SUB OF THE GAME
|QUOTE OF THE DAY
|�We've worked hard all year and it felt good to get our first win on the road, even if it is the last game of the season." - Sting forward Sheri Sam|
|STAT OF THE GAME
Charlotte - .500 (30-60)
New York - .373 (22-59)