After they suffered a deflating 84-72 loss to the Los Angeles Sparks this past Sunday, August 25, the Connecticut Sun regrouped and cruised past the defending WNBA champions - the Seattle Storm.
This past Tuesday, August 27, Jonquel Jones and company easily picked apart the Storm, 89-70 at the Alaska Airlines Arena, Seattle, Washington. The win improved the Sun to 21-9, one game behind the Washington Mystics, 22-8, for first place.
The 6’6’’ Grand Bahamian had a relatively quiet night, posting 10 points on four-for-seven shooting, three rebounds and three blocked shots.
Power forward Alyssa Thomas was tough for the Storm to slow down. She led with a game-high 22 points, 11 rebounds and four assists and two steals. Shooting guard Courtney Williams chipped in with 17 points, five rebounds and four assists.
The Sun owned a 24-20 lead at the end of the first period and eventually led the Storm 44-36 headed into halftime.
At the 6:06 mark of the third period the Sun held a 14-point, 58-44 lead over the Storm. The Sun ultimately out-scored the Storm 27-13 and held a 71-49 lead headed into the fourth period.
The Sun’s defense proved to be a problem for the Storm to handle. The Sun forced 17 turnovers and out-shot the Storm 52.9 percent - 40.3 percent.
Sun’s head coach Curt Miller shared post-game that their recent road win was monumental for the team. While the Sun hold a strong 14-1 record at the Mohegan Sun Arena, their trips on the road have led them to a now 7-8 mark.
“We had great energy from start to finish. I think when we took a timeout when we were down 12-6 we went on a 10-0 run afterwards. We really responded well to the activity and movement after that timeout.
“Scoring 89 points on the road, not giving up a lot of threes, not giving up a lot of foul shots. We out-scored them by 40 points in the paint. I’m just really happy with our aggressiveness getting the ball in the paint. That led to good things.”
Thomas also shared, “We know the importance of each and every game now and we came in locked in tonight.”
The Sun will be on the road once again when they take on the New York Liberty this coming Friday, August 30 at 7:30 p.m. live on NBA TV.
Following that contest the Sun will be back at home when they welcome the Dallas Wings at 7:00 p.m. on September 4. They will then take on the Chicago Sky on September 6 at the Mohegan Sun Arena. Tip-off time is 7: 30 p.m.
The battle for the top two seeds will be one to keep an eye on.
The top two seeds in the play-offs receive a bye to the semifinals, which will be a best of five series. The third and fourth seeds receive a bye to the second round, which is a single elimination game.
The Sun will aim to hold on tight to that second seed, as single elimination games have not gone in their favor the past two seasons. They lost both post-season appearances to the Phoenix Mercury in 2017 and 2018.
The Mystics, Sun, Sparks, Aces, Sky, Minnesota Lynx and Storm have already clinched play-off berths. The final and eighth spot, currently held by the Mercury, is still up for grabs.