Despite a commanding start from Tina Charles, who was responsible for the New York Liberty’s first 11 points of the game, the defending champion Los Angeles Sparks earned a road victory over the homestanding Liberty by a final of 90-75.
The 2017 season’s inaugural matchup of the WNBA’s top two markets went the way of LA as they are now 3-2 while the Liberty find themselves at 2-3.
From the looks of things early, it certainly appeared as if this was going to be Charles’ game en route to a New York victory. She led all scorers with 25 points. The Sparks’ duo of Nneka Ogwumike (22 points) and Candace Parker (20 points, 11 rebounds) eventually paid major dividends in leading LA to its third win of this young season.
Fourteen of Charles’ points came in the first quarter. Epiphanny Prince added 21.
New York had an early 11-3 advantage midway through the first quarter, but in a telltale sign of things, Los Angeles came back to trim its deficit to three (16-13), and only managed to trail by five after the end of the first quarter (21-16).
Another telltale sign of things occurred in the second half as Charles was in foul trouble. She picked up her fourth personal in the third quarter and her fifth in the final frame. Twenty of Ogwumike’s 22 came in the second half as well as nine of Parker’s boards.
Next for LA is the Chicago Sky back home at Staples Center. As for the Liberty, they await the Dallas Wings on Friday at home as well.