For the second time in three games Wednesday, the Liberty won a tight game in the final minute, defeating the defending WNBA champion Seattle Storm, 84-83, in Seattle. It was the Liberty’s third straight win and lifted them to a 6-7 record for the season. The Liberty began with four straight losses.
Tina Charles had 26 points, five rebounds and four assists, Kia Nurse added 24 points. Once again, Joe Tsai’s team was without three key players —two starters— because of a scheduling conflict with the FIBA Europe Women’s Cup, being played this week and next in Latvia and Serbia.
Charles scored 11 straight New York points in the fourth quarter for an 84-83 lead with 57.3 seconds left. After a timeout at 25.7, Seattle passed it around the arc and Jordin Canada missed an open 3-pointer from the top of the key. Alysha Clark grabbed an offensive rebound but her putback attempt rolled off at the buzzer.
Last Friday, Reshanda Gray hit one of two free throws with 24.4 seconds left to lift the Liberty to a 69-68 victory over the Dallas Wings at Westchester County Center.
Tanisha Wright added 10 points for New York (6-7), which has won three straight games.
New York trailed 70-60 after being outscored 30-19 in the third quarter, but the Liberty scored the first 10 points of the fourth to tie it. New York plays again on Friday vs. the Phoenix Mercury in Phoenix. Game time is 10 p.m. ET and will be telecast by CBS Sports Network.
Mercedes Russell set a career high with 19 points for Seattle (8-7). Natasha Howard added 15 points, six rebounds and four steals and Sami Whitcomb chipped in with 13 points.
In other Liberty News, assistant coach Charmin Smith has moved on to Berkeley where she will be the women’s team coach at the University of California.