SAN ANTONIO (JULY 7, 2017) – Kayla McBride notched her fourth 20-point game of the season, but the Stars fell to the Phoenix Mercury 92-77 Friday night at the AT&T Center.
“I thought overall we held our ground and we fought — that’s something to build on,” Stars head coach Vickie Johnson said after the game. “I thought that our team did better than Wednesday, but we have to keep working, keep building and keep developing.”
McBride led all scorers with 22 points, but Alex Montgomery was the only other San Antonio player to score in double-digits with 12.
“I was just trying to be aggressive,” said McBride, who scored 9 points in the first four minutes of action. “We had a great crowd tonight — our fans were amazing —I was feeding off them and just trying to give my team the energy it needed.”
Kelsey Plum started for the Stars at point guard in place of the injured Moriah Jefferson, and the rookie scored 6 points and dished out 6 assists.
Dearica Hamby came off the bench to score 8 points and grab 5 rebounds, while Kayla Alexander recorded 6 points and 5 rebounds.
The game was hard-fought from the opening tip as both teams played aggressively, and Johnson was happy with the way her team fought even as tempers flared in the second half.
“We felt like we needed to prove something after last game against Connecticut, so I think we came out with a little more of an edge,” McBride said. “We’re not going to back down.”
Diana Taurasi got ejected from the contest in the fourth quarter after receiving a double technical with Alex Montgomery, but she still led the Mercury in scoring with 17 points. Brittney Griner scored 15 points and collected 8 rebounds, while Leilani Mitchell scored 15.
Monique Currie, who started the season with the Stars before getting traded on June 28, chipped in 12 points.
As a team, the Mercury made 10 three-pointers and refused to let the Stars back into the game even after the Taurasi ejection.
“We had that run where there was a spurt and the crowd was into it,” said Sydney Colson, who scored 5 points with four assists. “It gave the players on court a little more energy, but you can’t have lapses when the best player is out of the game — that’s when you have to capitalize.”
The Stars start a two-game road trip beginning with the Indiana Fever on Wednesday, July 12. Opening tip is scheduled for 11 a.m.
– Heath Clary, SAStars.com
The next Stars home game will be Thurs., July 20th vs. Indiana Fever. Click here to purchase tickets.