CHICAGO (AP) -Cappie Pondexter provided the spark Tuesday night and the New York Liberty responded with their most complete all-around effort of the season.
The WNBA veteran scored a season-high 31 points and the Liberty shook off a few sluggish moments in the opening quarter to roll past the Chicago Sky, 85-70.
``Defensively we've been pretty squared away, but offensively we've been really poor,' coach Anne Donovan said. ``It was good to see us come out and have a good offensive game - of course, led by Cappie's phenomenal performance.'
Pondexter hit 14 of 18 field goal attempts, and just missed a shot at beating her career high of 35 points when Donovan sat her with four minutes to play. Still, her big offensive night was more than enough to help the Liberty (3-4) snap a two-game losing streak.
``When we're clicking on all cylinders we can be a great team,' said Pondexter, a Chicago native who played at John Marshall High School. ``We're starting to figure each other out and tonight was a great team win for us.'
Chicago (4-5) came into the game riding a franchise record four-game winning streak, but lost for the second time to New York. The other defeat came May 16 at Madison Square Garden.
The Liberty used a 17-2 second-quarter run on the way to a 41-31 halftime lead. Pondexter then added 11 points in the third quarter as New York pushed the lead to 69-43, and the Liberty led by as many as 27 in the fourth quarter before the Sky made a late run.
New York center Taj McWilliams added 10 points and a game-high nine rebounds.
Epiphanny Prince scored 20 points off the bench to pace Chicago, while Sylvia Fowles added 10 points and six rebounds.
``Our first quarter was fine. It was back and forth, back and forth,' Sky coach Steven Key said. ``The next thing you know you get into guessing and being unsure and we're back where we were in the first four games: not disciplined, not focused enough and uninspired.'
Dominique Canty was one of the few bright spots for the Sky, hitting two field goals for 800 in her career. The 11-year veteran became the seventh WNBA player to reach 800 field goals, free throws, rebounds and assists.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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