Diana Taurasi makes historical past, leads Mercury over Sparks

Diana Taurasi returned from a nine-game absence to attain a game-high 25 factors and make WNBA historical past because the host Phoenix Mercury defeated the Los Angeles Sparks 88-79 on Sunday.

Taurasi, who hadn’t performed since Could 21 due to a fractured sternum, turned the primary WNBA participant to attain 9,000 profession factors. Brittney Griner added 22 factors and eight rebounds, Skyler Diggins-Smith scored 16 and Kia Nurse 13 for the Mercury (7-7).

Phoenix had misplaced 4 in a row earlier than defeating the host Sparks 80-66 of their final sport on June 18.

Erica Wheeler scored 21 factors, Te’a Cooper, who got here off the bench to attain a career-high 26 factors in a win towards Washington on Thursday, added 20, Brittney Sykes had 11 and Amanda Zahui B. 10 for the short-handed Sparks (6-8), who used simply eight gamers within the absence of injured Bria Holmes together with Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike.

Wheeler scored the primary 4 factors of the third quarter to tie the rating at 47, however her teammates added simply two factors through the first six minutes of the interval.

Brianna Turner, who completed with a game-high 15 rebounds, Taurasi and Diggins-Smith every had a basket and an help throughout a 13-2 run that gave the Mercury a 60-49 lead.

L.A. acquired inside eight factors, however Taurasi accomplished the third-quarter scoring with a pair of 3-pointers that gave Phoenix a 69-55 lead.

Diggins-Smith’s three-point play gave the Mercury a commanding 78-59 lead.

The rating was tied seven instances and the lead modified arms three time earlier than Cooper beat the buzzer with a jumper that gave L.A. a 26-24 lead on the finish of the primary quarter.

Taurasi surpassed the 9,000-point mark when she transformed a three-point play that tied the rating at 29 with 8:23 left within the second quarter.

The rating was tied once more at 34 and 40 earlier than Taurasi had an help and made a pair of free throws throughout a 7-0 Phoenix run.

Zahui B. made a 3-pointer that pulled the Sparks inside 47-43 at halftime.

–Area Degree Media

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