August 14th 2017
Liberty 83 Sparks 69
On a two game winning streak the Liberty defended home court on Sunday against one of the best teams in the league to secure their third straight victory.
“We were really happy about how we kept our composure.” – Bria Hartley
The Sparks began the game on fire, they were literally hitting every shot that they threw up. Candace Parker was very aggressive offensively and it was looking like it would be one of those games where she would put up some huge numbers. Chelsea Gray was also hot from the field she had 8-points in the first as the visitors took a 27-16 lead at the end of the period.
“You know Epiphany she’s such a talented player”-Bria Hartley
The Liberty then had an epiphany, no, not a sudden intuitive perception or insight into reality or essential meaning of something, the Liberty had an Epiphanny. Epiphanny Prince came alive in the second quarter and her aggressive attack on offense propelled her teammates to victory. She was everywhere, she was hitting shots, setting up teammates, grabbing rebounds and hustling to lose balls. The seven-year vet is no stranger to big performances, she often has games where she gets going and it becomes difficult for opposing defenses to slow her down. She sat to an ovation, a well deserved tribute as she finished with 18-points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists.
We know about the 113-points she put up in a high school game, we know about her prowess at Rutgers. Prince has always been reserved, she doesn’t talk much but she lets her game do the talking when she steps on the court.
“I’m used to seeing her play like that when we were kids..” – Tina Charles
Tina Charles had a great game (21-points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists) as well however like the great leader she is, she spoke about the play of Prince after the game and praised her efforts. Charles and Prince have a history on the basketball courts of New York City. Tina played and grew up in Queens while Epiphanny played in Brooklyn.
Shavonte Zellous also chimed in on the play of her teammate. The Liberty’s emotional leader (as I call her) was happy for her teammate’s success and welcomed the offensive help, as she puts it, “it helps us have an offensive balance.”
Zellous also had a big night offensively but it was her grit and ability to motivate her teammates that again stood out tonight. She finished with 19-points
“We came into a timeout and Shavonte Zellous was saying its not our offense its our defense we have to lock down.”- Tina Charles
The Liberty took control of the game from the second quarter after a huge 20-0 run that gave them the lead at the half, Prince had 8 of those points. Their defensive pressure also played a huge role in the run, as they defended the boards getting rebounds that led to transition opportunities. They were able to maintain their composure and disrupt any comeback attempts by the Sparks.
The Liberty play two big games this week as they look to secure playoff positioning. They face the young Connecticut Sun on Friday, a team that they have had some trouble with this season and on Sunday August 20th they return home to get a third shot at the league’s most dominant team in the Minnesota Lynx.
Thank you for reading.
All Photos and video by Sherman Gomez for PureSportsNY.com
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