The New York Liberty earned themselves a much-needed win on Sunday afternoon defeating the Las Vegas Aces 88-78.
The last win for the Liberty dated back to July 15, 2018. So far this early WNBA season they had given their opponents a solid run for their money dropping three games by single digits. The Liberty is a talented squad who hit a tough stretch of losses, and sometimes all the difference in the world can just be getting that first win to generate confidence and momentum for your team. They came out with unmatched energy and intensity that continued for the course of the game.
— WNBA (@WNBA) June 9, 2019
"From start to finish this game, I think for me and for our crew, this was one with the best energy, one of the best executions, one of the best teams," said Liberty head coach Katie Smith following the contest. "I am proud of those who have been here this whole time. I am proud of the ones that are here bringing it every day, every day they show up ready to go."
The Aces jumped out with an early first quarter lead, which was regained by the Liberty with a massive offensive second quarter where they outscored Las Vegas 26-15. It became clear from early in the game that the Liberty had the momentum. They outhustled the Aces, played tougher and they quite simply wanted it more.
Tina Charles led the way for the Liberty with 21 points. Bria Hartley added 17 and Kia Nurse chipped in 15. Brittany Boyd added eight points but served as a major catalyst and offensive spark when they needed it. It was that balanced scoring the Liberty desperately needed and will continue to need to remain competitive in the league. There are too many talented players on their roster for it solely to lie on Charles' shoulders.
The Aces' game plan forced someone other than Charles to beat them by daring players like Boyd to take shots. If players can continue to step off offensively, the Liberty can string together a series of wins.
New York also did a solid job on the glass and were able to outrebound Las Vegas 46-42. They did a great job of taking care of the basketball with limited turnovers with nine while the Aces finished with 12. And they shared the basketball with a season-high 21 assists. All-in-all, it was one of the Liberty's best performances we've seen in recent years.
"We always had confidence," said Charles following the contest. "It's just about how we close out the games. Most of the games we lost we have been in. I am just happy we were able to come out with the victory."
Kayla McBride led all scorers with a season-high 25 points. Liz Cambage finished with her first double-double of the season with 17 points and 10 rebounds in 24 minutes. A'ja Wilson struggled offensively finishing with just five points on 2 for 10 from the field.
New York will look to add to the win column as they host the Minnesota Lynx this Wednesday, June 12 at 7:00 pm EST.
Las Vegas will turn around and host New York again this Friday, June 14 at 10:30 pm EST.