Thursday, May 24th, 2018

Notes and quotes: Phoenix snaps losing streak in win over San Antonio, 85-78

Published on July 1, 2015

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Notes

  • With a layup at the 5:33 mark of the third quarter, Mercury forward DeWanna passed Mercury great Jennifer Gilliom for third on the franchise all-time scoring list. Gillom scored 2,793 points after a six-year career with Phoenix starting in 1997. Diana Taurasi (6,722) and Penny Taylor (3,275) currently hold the tops spots on the all-time scoring list. Bonner finished the night with 13 points and now has 2,803 career points. She has scored in double-figures all nine games this season.
  • Mercury center Brittney Griner made her 2015 home debut and scored a game-high 23 points on 9-of-15 shooting from the field with eight rebounds and four blocked shots.
  • Mercury forward DeWanna Bonner tied a career-high with seven assists (August 1, 2013 at Seattle).
  • Mercury forward Candice Dupree tied a season-high with eight field goals made and has now scored in double-figures in eight of nine games this season.
  • Phoenix shot 59.6-percent (34-of-57) from the field, the fifth-highest field goal percentage in a game in team history and the highest since august 6, 2010 vs. San Antonio (60.3-percent, 36-of-63). It also marked the highest field goal percentage by any WNBA team in a game this season and the highest by any WNBA team since Minnesota shot 63.8-percent on June 17, 2014.
  • The Mercury has won eight of their last ten games against the Stars, including the 2015 season-opener on June 5 in Phoenix.
  • Phoenix set season highs for points in the paint (50), field goal percentage (59.6%) and points (85, previously 81, June 14 vs. Minnesota).
  • Stars forward Kayla McBride and center Sophia Young-Malcolm led San Antonio with 18 points each.
  • Phoenix snapped a two-game losing streak and ended San Antonio’s two-game winning streak.
  • Phoenix improved to 19-2 (.905) at home since the start of the 2014 season—the best home record in the WNBA in that time.

Quotes

Phoenix head coach Sandy Brondello

(On the execution at the end of the game):

“I thought that it was a step in the right direction today. You know, are we where we need to be? No, but it’s how we need to play and now we just got to do it consistently and just get in to that kind of rhythm. So I’m happy with the effort near the end, but San Antonio, they got some scorers and they made some tough shots there in the end. But we had a little bit more composure and we finished.”

(On the early start without scoring from DeWanna Bonner):

“I thought that was one of DB’s better games. You know, 13 points, seven assists, which is also a career high for her, and six rebounds. That’s the kind of numbers that we expect from her. When we’re moving the ball and getting the paint touches, having good movement off the ball, I think that’s when we’re the hardest to beat.”

(On Brittany Griner’s passing):

“She’s a play maker too. We have two post players that are play makers (Candice Dupree). We want the ball in their hands because they do make good decisions and that’s an area that really, you saw it last year, the emphasis on Brittany. They trapped her a little bit and she’s playing with a little bit more poise and finding the open man. So that’s great for us and we’ll need that going forward.

Mercury forward Candice Dupree

(On the good start):

“I think we just had a great overall game. Unfortunately they came back in the end, but it’s the WNBA so you expect it. But I think we had a great overall win, I think everyone did great.”

(On being the third highest scorer in Mercury franchise history):

“I love it here, this is my home. I love the fans, I love my teammates, the organizations great. To be on that list is just amazing. There are some great people that are on that list. It will probably be hard to catch one and two. No, it’s not all about that, but to be up there is just great. I have been here long enough so it’s a great feeling.”

Mercury center Brittney Griner

(On the energy level):

“Yeah, playing at home that happens. The X Factor is just amazing, they gave us a lot of energy tonight and we were pumped. We wanted to get a win and start building off of this win.”

(On if it was nice seeing the offense clicking early):

“Yeah, definitely. We were letting our defense create our offense and we were moving the ball and everybody was just moving really well together and we scored.”

San Antonio

Stars head coach Dan Hughes

(On his overall thoughts on the game and making it a close game late)

“If you look at the stats, it was the first quarter where the separation came. We either won or tied the last three quarters. It was just a gradual effect of us understanding what we needed to do. They shot the ball extremely well and they got it in the paint and you got to give them credit. I thought they were very efficient. We were a certain level of efficient and we just kept pressure, kept pressure, kept pressure. It’s just too bad there was so much separation in the first quarter.

(On how the injuries affected their style of play)

“Players had to play different roles. We had to play (Danielle) Robinson and (Sydney) Colson together. We had to play Sophia Young (-Malcolm) at the three. I think that’s what gave us a little bit of a slow start for us; it just was a different kind of rhythm than we played with over the past couple of weeks. They did fine, they fought through it. We needed to make a couple of more plays late. They had enough separation that it took a lot of effort for us to get back in. Give Phoenix credit. I thought, offensively, they were efficient in what they did and they made it tough on us.”

(On the differences in preparing to play the Mercury with Brittney Griner instead of without her)

“Are the Beatles the Beatles without Paul McCartney? It’s a big difference. It’s somebody that can change both offensive and defensive ends. She makes a big difference; she’s a big part to it so it’s obviously a different scenario.”

Stars forward Sophia Young-Malcolm

(On what changed from defeating the Mercury in San Antonio to tonight)

“I thought they shot the ball very well. What was it? I mean they shot the ball 60-percent and we shot the ball 43-percent. I think they were just making some tough shots down the stretch. Obviously, they have Brittney back and that was a factor also but it wasn’t something that separated us so much. They only out rebounded us by three, so it’s just a matter of that they shot the ball better than us. That’s just the only difference the last game.”

(On her solid performance on offense)

“For me, all I was thinking was just to be aggressive. During these games, I think that my team is depending on me to be aggressive offensively and we were going to need points to get the team going. I wasn’t thinking anything special, just to be aggressive.”

By the Numbers

Points in the Paint: Stars 26, Mercury 50
Second Chance Points: Stars 12, Mercury 10
Fastbreak Points: Stars 8, Mercury 4
Biggest Lead: Stars 0, Mercury 16
Lead Changes: 0
Times Tied: 1

This post is part of the thread: 2015 WNBA Season – an ongoing story on this site. View the thread timeline for more context on this post.


 

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