News & Quotes: Sun Beat Sparks, 102-94

  • The win marked the first victory over the Sparks in the Curt Miller era and the first since an 80-76 overtime win at Mohegan Sun Arena on June 26, 2015.
  • With 102 points tonight, Connecticut became the first team in WNBA history to score 100 or more points in its first two games of the season. It is also the second time in franchise history that the Sun have scored 100 or more points in two consecutive games.
  • Connecticut trailed by nine points, 74-65, at the end of the third quarter, but outscored the Sparks 37-20 in the fourth. The 37 points scored by the Sun in the frame tied a franchise record for points in a quarter, set on June 10, 2017 against Atlanta.
  • Jonquel Jones was 4-of-4 from the field in the fourth quarter and had 10 of her 17 points in that frame. Alyssa Thomas was 4-of-5 and scored nine of her 15 points in the quarter.
  • The Sun had six players in double-figures (Chiney Ogwumike 18, Jonquel Jones 17, Alyssa Thomas 15, Courtney Williams 14, Jasmine Thomas 13, Shekinna Stricklen 11) for the first time since August 15, 2017 vs. Atlanta.
  • The 40 made field goals by the Sun are the third-most in franchise history. Connecticut shot 62.5% (40-of-64) from the field, which was also the third-best total in team history.
  •  Trailing 86-82 with 4:49 left to play, Connecticut went on a 20-8 run to cement the victory.
  • The Sun bench, led by Jones’ 17 points, out-scored the Sparks reserves 31-13.
  • Four of Los Angeles’ starters scored in double-figures, led by Chelsea Gray with 21 points.

CONNECTICUT SUN QUOTES

HEAD COACH CURT MILLER

Opening Statement

“I’m proud of our team tonight, gutty fourth quarter. Certainly, I felt we could have gone away. Down nine, a little stagnant at the end of the third quarter, a team we haven’t beaten in a few years, easily could’ve seen a team pack it in and say it wasn’t our night. But our defense and intensity picked up, big stretch, and then the first couple minutes of the fourth quarter to give us the energy that we could do it. And then you saw a team playing their third game in five days and what this compacted schedule can do to people. Short-handed, third game in five days, and we looked like the fresher team in the fourth quarter and put up 37 points. Really was a gutty, gutty win, proud of our players.”

CHINEY OGWUMIKE

On playing against her sister Nneka Ogwumike

“Man, it felt good, it just felt right. Even though we’re playing against each other, I feel her positive vibes. It’s just sort of funny because there was a point where she hit a shot and then I hit a shot, I traveled and then she traveled, and then I remember I hit a jumper and she hit a three and I’m like really, she always has to one-up me. Nonetheless, she’s such a talented player. She is poised, she’s a leader and she’s everything I aspire to be. To be able to play against her and compete, I learn a lot from her, it’s just nice to win this time around.”

ALYSSA THOMAS

On the win over Los Angeles

“Yeah, we knew this game would be big for us. They’re missing Candace (Parker) and (Jantel) Lavender. The way the season is set up, any win that you can get against a team like that is huge and super important for us. We just went out there and played hard and finally got a win against them.”

LOS ANGELES SPARKS QUOTES

Head Coach Brian Agler On having a nine point lead heading into the fourth quarter and what went wrong.

“We turned the ball over. We didn’t turn it over the much during the game, but in that stretch we turned it over two or three times and they cut the lead back and really got the momentum. They played well and really outplayed us in the fourth quarter.” On it being hard to beat a team that shoots over 60 percent and outrebounds you 2 to 1 “We just didn’t defend down the stretch. We were a step slow in everything we were doing. Our defense wasn’t as active as it was earlier in the game and they hit some timely shots.”

NNEKA OGUMIKE

On why Connecticut outrebounded them 29-14

“In transition we were not paying much attention to the matchups. When we subbed out, we made an emphasis that we needed to matchups because we have an unconventional lineup and we didn’t pay special attention to that detail and we were not great at the point of attack and that messes you up on the offensive boards and this not like us and they are going to capitalize on that type of stuff.”

On if Connecticut is hard to defend because they have so many weapons

“Oh yeah, absolutely. They have versatility with the guards and the posts so we had to be able to understand what to take away.”

CHELSEA GRAY

On what Connecticut did so well to win tonight

“They got out in transition, were able to hit some buckets and went on a run. We had opportunities to win the game, but they were good tonight.”

On what was the difference in the fourth quarter when the Sun outscored them 37-20

“We had a few turnovers in transition, I know I did, and that helped them get the momentum and easy buckets. We will have to look at the film at get better.”