WNBA

Liberty 79, Dream 74

Share This Story

   
 

NEWARK, N.J. (AP)

After the New York Liberty lost their first five games of the season, All-Star guard Cappie Pondexter found herself in totally unfamiliar territory.

''Being 0-5, I never experienced that before anywhere in any part of my career,'' Pondexter said. ''It was awful. I knew we had to turn things around.''

Pondexter scored 26 points to lead the Liberty to their second straight win, a 79-74 victory over the Atlanta Dream on Tuesday night.

Pondexter took it upon herself to carry the Liberty to the victory, making clutch shots in the fourth quarter. Her driving goal with 8:29 left gave the Liberty the lead for good and her three-point play with 4:36 left pushed the lead to 70-66.

''We had to refocus the last couple of days after we lost five in a row,'' said Pondexter, who had nine points in the final period. ''It was just a case of me being aggressive. The important thing for us is to focus on what we need to do to win.''

Leilani Mitchell added 18 points in the victory.

''Of course, we knew we were a better team than 0-5,'' Mitchell said. ''But it's a long season and the league is so good. Any game could go either way. It was very frustrating to lose those five games, but we had to remain positive.''

Atlanta dropped to 2-4 after losing its second straight contest

Liberty head coach John Whisenant believes that the difference in his team is on the defensive end. Atlanta routed the Liberty 100-74 on May 25.

''We knew we had to defend better,'' Whisenant said. ''We surrendered 26 points less than when they hammered us. We struggled with our defense in the first five games, but we were better tonight. This is the way we have to play to be successful.''

Angel McCoughtry had 21 points and 14 rebounds to pace Atlanta, while Aneika Henry had 14 and Sancho Lyttle 12 points for the Dream.

New York held Atlanta to just six points over the final 4:53 to secure the win.

''It was a tough loss for us,'' Atlanta head coach Marynell Meadors said. ''We missed a lot of shots in the fourth quarter. Give the Liberty credit for playing hard. Our shots were there. They just didn't fall. I also thought they shot the ball better with Cappie and Mitchell.''

The Liberty also received 15 points and eight rebounds from Kia Vaughn.

The two teams traded leads over the first three quarter. Atlanta led 62-61 heading into the final period. Pondexter hit a jumper in the lane after putting on a dribbling exhibition to give the Liberty a 63-62 advantage with 8:29 remaining and Mitchell made a long 3-pointer to push the lead to 66-62 with 5:56 left.

The Liberty lost their first five games before beating Indiana at home on Sunday to end the longest winless streak to start the season in franchise history.

''We're playing harder now and with more confidence,'' Mitchell said. ''We're getting strong contributions from everyone. I think we're a better team now.''

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


FOX SPORTS Videos

Will Johnny Manziel start week one? Posted: Jul 22, 2014
Peter Schrager discusses Geno Smith and Mike Vick's working relationship, Johnny...

Michael Sam speaks as Rams open camp Posted: Jul 23, 2014
Michael Sam talks about his conditioning and adjusting to the pace of the NFL as...

Sterling says he's not trying to block Clippers sale Posted: Jul 23, 2014
Donald Sterling's lawyer contends Sterling is not trying to block the sale of th...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Mitchell & Ness Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird Green Authentic Throwback Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Boston_Celtics/browse/featuredproduct/118804/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_118000/FF_118804_xl.jpg&w=100 249.95 Mitchell & Ness Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird Green Authentic Throwback Jersey
    adidas Los Angeles Lakers Purple Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/172442/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_172000/FF_172442_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Los Angeles Lakers Purple Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Miami Heat Black Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/173566/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_173000/FF_173566_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Miami Heat Black Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Chicago Bulls Red Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Chicago_Bulls/browse/featuredproduct/173568/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_173000/FF_173568_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Chicago Bulls Red Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird White Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Boston_Celtics/browse/featuredproduct/177922/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177922_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird White Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball..
    adidas Atlanta Hawks #21 Dominique Wilkins Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Atlanta_Hawks/browse/featuredproduct/177923/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177923_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Atlanta Hawks #21 Dominique Wilkins Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basket..
    adidas Los Angeles Lakers #32 Magic Johnson Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey - Gold http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/177924/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177924_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Los Angeles Lakers #32 Magic Johnson Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketbal..
    adidas New York Knicks #19 Willis Reed Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/178326/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178326_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas New York Knicks #19 Willis Reed Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Bas..
    adidas Philadelphia 76ers #6 Julius Erving Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Philadelphia_76ers/browse/featuredproduct/178582/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178582_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Philadelphia 76ers #6 Julius Erving Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman..
    adidas Houston Rockets #34 Hakeem Olajuwon Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Houston_Rockets/browse/featuredproduct/178773/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178773_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Houston Rockets #34 Hakeem Olajuwon Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basket..