Charles had 22 points and 11 rebounds and the Sun used an exceptional shooting performance to beat the Atlanta Dream 92-73 for their third consecutive victory.
“(I’m) just playing hard,” Charles said. “(I’m) just trying to get a win. That’s just my motivation out there. Just trying to get a win and doing what I can each possession.”
Charles became the fastest player in WNBA history to reach 50 career double-doubles, accomplishing the feat in 75 games. Charles already held the league record for most rebounds in a season with 398 in 2010 and most double-doubles in a season with 23 in 2011.
“Her offensive rebounding has been big and she’s been getting to the free-throw line,” teammate Asjha Jones said. “She’s scoring in every aspect of the game right now. She is awesome and she is active and she doesn’t really take any possessions off.”
Charles also set a franchise record by scoring in double digits for the 19th consecutive game. She was tied with Jones at 18 straight.
Connecticut shot 61.7 percent (37 of 60) from the field, the second-best effort in franchise history.
“It’s not going to happen every night like that,” Kara Lawson said, “but I’m glad it happened tonight.”
Jones had 17 points, seven rebounds, four assists and two blocks. Lawson scored 21 points.
The Sun put the Dream away with an 11-0 run in the fourth quarter. Charles scored six points during the decisive stretch, capping the surge with a layup that gave Connecticut an 84-67 lead with over three minutes left in the game.
Mistie Mims’ layup with less than a minute left gave the Sun their biggest lead of the game at 90-70.
Atlanta put together a 9-0 run to trim Connecticut’s lead to 63-53 with 2:40 left in the third. Tiffany Hayes’ layup got the Dream within six with about seven minutes left in the fourth.
“I thought we did a great job of cutting it to six, and then we threw the ball away twice,” Atlanta coach Marynell Meadors said. “They came back and scored, and when that happened, it took a little of the excitement out of it and deflated us a little bit.
“I’m real proud of our team. I thought we fought hard all the way through. We were definitely at a disadvantage most of the game simply because they shot the ball so well.”