Los Angeles, CA – The LA Sparks cruise to another victory at home with great defense 87-74 over the New York Liberty on Friday night at Staples.
Going into the half the Sparks had let the Liberty back in the game giving up 12 fast break points. The lapse in defense allowed them to chip away with 22 points in the paint.
There is a reason why you play all four quarters of a basketball game.
Candace Parker who scored 8 of her team high 24 points in third to allow for her team to regain the lead.
“We played our best in the third quarter defensively,” said Sparks head coach Brian Agler, “Our defense fueled our offense.”
This team all season has gone through spells of inconsistent play, but when they focus on their defense they are a tough to stay with.
The Liberty were held to just 11 points in third quarter and the Sparks never really looked back after scoring 25. They stretched their lead to as much as 20 points in the fourth quarter.
Coach Agler who has inserted Odyssey Sims into the starting line-up, looks brilliant based on her play. Tonight Sims exploded scoring 20 points in 34 minutes with no turnovers in the game.
“We have a great team,” said Sims “You never know who going to break out.”
As this team continues to play more games together who knows where the chemistry can take them.
Nneka Ogwumike who also had strong performance with 17 points, four rebounds, and six assists in the game.
“Every year like starting from scratch,” said Ogwemike.
That has been a rally call for this team, even coach spoke about this squad has been moving in the right direction.
“I challenged them to be the best team we can be.” said Agler.
So New York was just one more team standing in the way of the Sparks who are fighting for one of the top two seeds in this new playoff format adopted last year.
Tina Charles of Liberty who was slowed down with foul trouble still scored 10 points despite missing a whole quarter of play.
New York leading scorer was guard Bria Hartley with 16 points, and three assists for the game.
The Sparks now move their record to 18-6, and will meet Dallas Wings Sunday to start five game road trip.