Cappie Pondexter and the Liberty bounce back at home.
Three game losing-streak, no more. On Sunday, the New York Liberty (3-5) finally snapped their three game skid, dominating the Washington Mystics (4-4) at home to cruise to an 81-64 wire-to-wire victory.
The Liberty came out the gate scorching hot. They began the game on a 10-0 run and finished the 1st quarter shooting 64 percent, while holding the Mystics to 33 percent shooting using their trademark tough defense. However, the Mystics were still close as the quarter ended in a 22-17 Liberty lead.
But the game wouldn’t be close again. The Liberty went on to dominate the rest of the game from the 2nd quarter on, piling on a game-high 28 point lead at one point.
So what changed so drastically in the Liberty’s play that allowed them to dictate the game? New York’s head coach Bill Laimbeer believes it was some luck, but mostly energy. “The energy level was phenomenal in the first half and that’s what carried us… when you’re that locked in good things happen,” Laimbeer said when asked about the key to winning the game.
Some of that energy can be attributed to Cappie Pondexter, who only scored 5 points on 2-10 shooting last game on Thursday June 5th against the San Antonio Stars, but bounced back with 21 points on 10-11 shooting to lead the team.
When asked about Pondexter’s blistering start, and the rest of the team’s offensive explosion, Bill Laimbeer responded: “One of the things we did was open up the offense for the guards. We had the structure in place, we just weren’t utilizing it, so we emphasized the structure for the guards, we put a little more simplicity in how to get into the sets for the guards, and I think that [Cappie Pondexter] was very happy with the results.”
Very happy indeed. Pondexter scored a season high and New York played arguably their best game of this early season.
Maybe now, finally, the Liberty can fix the inconsistency that plagued them last year, and so far this year, and climb their way out of their second-to-last place hole in the Eastern Conference. We will find out Tuesday June 10th 12:30 PM ET when they face the struggling Tulsa Shock (1-5) on the road.