Sun-Liberty Preview

The Connecticut Sun are in second place in the Eastern Conference despite winning once in their last 14 road games.

They’ll return to the site of that victory Sunday in a matchup with the struggling New York Liberty at Madison Square Garden.

The Sun (8-7) surged up the East standings on the heels of a six-game win streak that ended Friday with a 69-63 loss at Washington. Connecticut, which lost for the first time since falling to the Mystics on June 5, was plagued by poor shooting from 3-point range, misfiring on 12 of 15 attempts.

The Sun had shot 46.6 percent from beyond the arc and averaged 85.2 points during their win streak, which included a pair of victories over the Liberty (4-11).

Connecticut made 8 of 15 3-pointers in an 83-75 victory at MSG on June 13 – its only win in six 2014 road games – and had all five starters score in double figures in a 76-72 home win over the Liberty two days later. The Sun were without top overall pick Chiney Ogwumike, who was back at Stanford for graduation, in the June 15 contest after she had 20 points at MSG.

The victory at New York snapped a 12-game road skid for the Sun dating to an 88-66 win over the Liberty in Newark, N.J., on Aug. 3. New York played its home games there from 2011-13 as MSG underwent a $1 billion renovation.

Connecticut’s Katie Douglas had 14 points in both meetings earlier this month and has been instrumental to her team’s success. She’s averaging 16.3 points in the last seven games after averaging 9.3 during the Sun’s 2-6 start.

Cappie Pondexter had been carrying New York’s offense, averaging 19.8 points over a five-game stretch before missing all seven of her shots and being held scoreless in Friday’s 73-69 home loss to Chicago.

The Liberty trailed 25-16 after one period and by as many as 13 in losing for the sixth time in seven games.

"What’s frustrating is coming from behind all the time," said Pondexter, who combined for 41 points and 10 assists in the two losses to Connecticut this month. "I don’t know what button we need to be pushed going out there. We’re ready coming out of the locker room but I don’t know what happens."

New York had no answer for the Sun at MSG two weeks ago, as Connecticut scored 10 of the first 12 points and led by 16 after one quarter.

Former Sun star Tina Charles had 25 points, 10 rebounds and six assists at home against Connecticut before scoring 15 in the finale of the home-and-home set. She had nine points and nine rebounds while Pondexter scored 17 as the Liberty rolled to a 75-54 win at Connecticut in the season opener for both teams May 16.