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New York Liberty blown out in Los Angeles, fall to 4-8 (Highlights)

The New York Liberty suffered their worst loss of the season on the west coast on Sunday, crushed by the league-leading Sparks.

It may be getting late early for the New York Liberty.

The Liberty suffered their worst loss of the season on Sunday afternoon, as they concluded a winless west coast pair with an 80-54 defeat at the hands of the Los Angeles Sparks at Staples Center.

The loss continues a painful stretch for the Liberty (4-8), who have lost four of their last five games, with the quartet of defeats coming by at least 10 points. Sunday was by far the most brutal, with the Liberty trailing by as much as 31, struggling to gain any traction against the league-leading Sparks (10-3).

In a rare silver lining, reserve Amanda Zauhi B. set a career high with 21 points in the losing effort.

3rd Star: Tina Charles 

Charles struggled once more on Sunday, but unlike Friday’s night’s defeat in Las Vegas, she never recovered from the slow start and failed to make history for the second consecutive game. While she was one of two Liberty players in double figures (10 points on 5-of-15 shooting), she failed to pass Taj McWilliams-Franklin for 18th all-time in the WNBA scoring book, though she’s only two away from doing so.

2nd Star: Brittany Boyd 

Since her return from injury, Boyd has turned into a bit of a Swiss Army Knife off the bench for the Liberty, and, though in vain, she tried her to best to provide a spark when things got dire. She accumulated 8 of the team’s 14 assists, and also put in seven points and six rebounds.

1st Star: Amanda Zauhi B. 

Easily the brightest spot for the Liberty, Zauhi B. set a career-high with 21 points and was the only Liberty shooter with at least three attempts to have a positive shooting percentage. Zauhi B. had a strong west coast trip, tallying 36 points.

Perhaps most impressive is a sudden propensity for outside shooting, as she’s already more than quadrupled her triples this season from last, currently at nine for the year.

How It Was Decided

The Liberty fell behind 11-2 early, but midway through the second, they had managed to cut the Los Angeles lead to 25-23. However, a brutal 20-4 stretch, engineered by the beginning of a stellar game from Riquina Williams, buried the Liberty, capped off by a Williams triple to send the Sparks into the locker room with a tidal wave of momentum and a 43-27 leader.

The closest the Liberty got was 12 for the remainder of the game.

Game Notes

  • Shavonte Zellous returned to the lineup for the Liberty after missing one game with an undisclosed illness. It was a rude welcome back, however, as she failed to score in her return. The Liberty are 4-1 when Zellous reaches 10 points.
  • Zellous would return to the starting lineup, taking her spot back from Sugar Rodgers. Epiphanny Prince made her first start of the season, replacing Marissa Coleman.
  • Coleman left the game late with an apparent injury, limping off the court in the fourth quarter. Her status was not immediately available.
  • The Sparks’ 26-point victory was their most one-sided win over New York, breaking a record set in August 2012 by one point. In this series between two charter WNBA franchises, the Sparks now lead 24-22.

What’s Next

The Liberty will return home and welcome in another elite Western Conference opponent in the Phoenix Mercury on Tuesday night (7:00 PM, MSG+). Phoenix earned an 80-74 victory at Madison Square Garden back on June 5.

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