Mercury stave off playoff elimination again
The defending WNBA champions avoided elimination and are still in the hunt for the last playoff spot in the Western Conference.
Coupled with the Sacramento Monarchs’ 78-71 win over Minnesota on Sunday night, the Mercury moved into sole possession of fifth place, two games behind fourth-place Sacramento. Houston and Minnesota are three games back with three to play.
Mistie Williams scored a career-high 17 points to lead the Comets, who have lost five in a row and are just 3-13 on the road.
LeCoe Willingham added 16 points and seven rebounds for Phoenix, which has won three straight.
Taurasi scored 22 points, making 15-of-15 from the free-throw line, in the first half. The 15 free throws set a WNBA record for most in a half, topping Houston’s Tina Thompson, who made 14 on June 11, 2007.
Taurasi tied Lauren Jackson’s WNBA mark for 30-point games in a career with 20. Jackson is sitting out the end of this WNBA season.
The Mercury went on a 18-6 run midway through the third quarter to open up a close game, capped by Pondexter’s three-point play with 1:45 left in the period that gave Phoenix a 72-61 lead. The Mercury led by at least 12 throughout the final quarter.