Phoenix Mercury hold on to tight victory over Liberty
PHOENIX (AP) — Diana Taurasi and Sophie Cunningham each scored 23 points and the Phoenix Mercury beat the New York Liberty 84-81 on Thursday night.
Skylar Diggins-Smith hit four free throws in the final 22.6 seconds for Phoenix (10-14). Diggins-Smith finished with 13 points and nine assists, and Shey Peddy had 13 points and four steals.
The Mercury never trailed.
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Sabrina Ionescu led New York (9-13) with 22 points and 10 rebounds. Natasha Howard and Stefanie Dolson each scored 16 points.
The Mercury jumped in front 29-18 in the first quarter. New York chipped away at the deficit and entered the fourth quarter down by two.
Diggins-Smith sank a three to give Phoenix a needed cushion 80-76 with 1:11 remaining.
Ionescu then drilled a three-pointer to cut the deficit to one with 13.6 left on the clock, but the Liberty did not get a shot off with 3.1 second left down by three.
The win for Phoenix snapped a two-game skid.
The Mercury are back in action Tuesday against the Minnesota Lynx.