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WNBA Recaps: Phoenix Mercury Diana Taurasi Passes 9,000 Points

Diana Taurasi is back in court in style at Phoenix Suns Arena on Sunday with 25 points, including her 9,000th career point, in a 88-79 victory for the Phoenix Mercury over the Los Angeles Sparks.

Taurasi, who was away for a little over a month with a sternum fracture, reached 9,001 points in one minute and 37 seconds in the second quarter. She is the first player in WNBA history to reach 9,000 and is comfortably ahead of Tina Thompson (7,488 career points) in first place on the all-time standings.

Taurasi, 39, had a comeback season in the controversy in 2020 and averaged 15.8 points per game in 2021 before the time she missed. 25 points was a season high and it was quite a way to return, especially with the pressure to possibly reach 9,000 points. And it achieved a victory that Mercury (7-7) desperately needed. The team is still trying to recover from four consecutive losses, but he has now won two in a row.

The Mercury has not played since June 18. Taurasi was 9-out-9 from the charity streak and 4-out-8 from distance.

Brittney Griner continues her MVP campaign for Phoenix with 22 points and eight rebounds. She is currently sixth in the WNBA in the standings (19.8 points per game) and is tied for sixth in the rebound (9.9 boards per game).

The Mercury did not get much from their bench, but it was quite a game for their beginners. Brianna Turner scored eight points and 15 rebounds, Skylar Diggins-Smith passed for 16 points and four assists and Kia Nurse was good for 13 points and six rebounds.

Phoenix won the third 22-12 to take a 14-point lead and take fourth place. The nearest LA that came in the final frame was within nine, the margin by which he lost.

Erica Wheeler led the Sparks by 21 points and added four helpers, while Te’a Cooper (20 points) scored 20 points for the second time in a row after dropping a career-high 26 on June 24. Brittney Sykes played well on both sides. of the ball in a defeat with 11 points, six boards, four assists and three steals.

Other action

Las Vegas Aces (11-4) over Seattle Storm (12-4), 95-92 (OT)

Chelsea Gray (21 points, seven assists) hit a midfield shot with 10.6 seconds remaining time giving Vegas the lead. Sue Bird then missed a try, A’ja Wilson (22 points, 11 rebounds) made two free kicks and the Storm did not have time to get a legal shot after that.

Breanna Stewart had 35 points, 11 boards and three blocks in the defeat and missed a catch and shot in the paint on the buzz of regulation with Dearica Hamby’s hand in her face.

Seattle led by 7:44 to regulate a Stewart try. Vegas then took a 9-2 run through a try from Kelsey Plum to give the lead. Then there were four pilot calls over four minutes and 27 seconds. Stewart tied the game at 84 with 52.7 ticks before overtime.

Plum finished with 15 points while Jackie Young and Riquna Williams were both 12. Williams was 4-out-6 from outside the arc, while Plum was 2-out-3. Liz Cambage added nine points and seven rebounds.

It was a big win for the Aces, who lost by a 7-7 loss to the Minnesota Lynx and are now just half a game behind first-place Storm.

Connecticut Sun (10-5) over Chicago Sky (9-8), 74-58

The Sun ended the Sky winning streak of seven games and also ended their series of seven games with 80 plus points by holding them to a lowest season. As for the leaderboard, a Sun loss would have enabled Sky to conquer them for third place. Instead, they are now two games ahead of Chicago and just 1.5 games behind first-place Storm.

DeWanna Bonner (seven rebounds) scored 23 points for Connecticut, which was again without MVP candidate Jonquel Jones, while Brionna Jones added 21 points and nine boards. Jasmine Thomas placed 18 points and Beatrice Mompremier pulled 11 rebounds.

Kahleah Copper and Allie Quigley both scored 11 points in the defeat, while Candace Parker held just six and Diamond DeShields just two. Courtney Vandersloot did have seven assistants, but this was her lowest assist total since June 12. She has averaged 10.6 helpers in the previous five games.

Connecticut led by eight to one and halftime by six before winning the third 26-14.

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