PHOENIX (AP) — On Thursday night, the Phoenix Mercury defeated the New York Liberty 84-81 thanks to the combined 23 points of Diana Taurasi and Sophie Cunningham.
For Phoenix, Skylar Diggins-Smith made four free throws in the final 22.6 seconds (10-14). Shey Peddy had 13 points and four steals, while Diggins-Smith finished with 13 points and nine assists.
Mercury never fell behind. While it was a very close affair, the Phoenix Mercury never gave away their lead and nor did they trail in this match. They kept up the pressure on the liberty side, which made it a fast paced game.
Moreover, with 22 points and 10 rebounds, Sabrina Ionescu led New York (9-13) in scoring. Each of Stefanie Dolson and Natasha Howard scored 16 points.
In the first quarter, the Mercury surged out to a 29-18 advantage. As the third quarter came to a close, New York was down by two points. With 1:11 left, Diggins-Smith hit a three-pointer to give Phoenix the much-needed lead, 80-76.
With 13.6 seconds left, Ionescu made a three-pointer to reduce the margin to one, but the Liberty were still down three with 3.1 seconds remaining.
Phoenix’s victory ended a two-game losing streak. The Mercury will play again against the Minnesota Lynx on Tuesday.