After a poor performance on Friday, Cappie Pondexter bounced back to lead New York to a victory on Sunday.
NEW YORK CITY– The Connecticut Sun won the efficiency battle. The New York Liberty, of greater importance, won the game.
The Liberty edged the Sun 67-65 at Madison Square Garden on Sunday. Connecticut entered winning six of their last seven, the Liberty were on a six of seven of their own in the loss column.
The numbers of note:
It is rare for a team to ‘win’ efficiency but not the game – it happens less than 5 percent of the time. One way it does happen is through stronger offensive rebounding. The figures bear this out and in raw numbers the Sun held a 15-6 edge on the offensive glass, a point coach Bill Laimbeer addressed with his Liberty team in a post game assessment.
Not all turnovers are created equal. The Liberty TO rate was not a disparaging number. Actually it was under the twenty percent mark. But a lot of these miscues came at a time the Liberty were holding onto a one possession lead late and were trying to seal the verdict. On the game, New York had 15 turnovers. Five can be damaging if they are in the final minutes and force you to forfeit a lead and ultimately the game.
Tina Charles and Cappie Pondexter tied for Liberty scoring honors with 14 points. Chiney Ogwumike of Connecticut led the way with 22 points adding a game high 17 boards. Pondexter’s effort Sunday was a complete reversal of Friday night’s debacle in a close loss to Chicago.
Pondexter’s numbers for the respective games.
New York opponents
Adding to Pondexter’s shooting woes were four turnovers against the Sky. The Connecticut game saw a sub .500 shooting percentage offset by three rebounds, two assists a steal and block. Not to mention a number of aggressive plays at key junctures, the type that do not get noticed as much in the statistics.
Connecticut is 8-7, the Liberty 5-10. The teams have split their four games to date. A factor if late season sees both battling fr a coveted playoff spot.