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Mercurio defeated Dream, 88-85 | 12news.com

Phoenix earned its first win since August 10, 2023 thanks to a professional night from new addition Kahleah Copper and some clutch shots from Sophie Cunningham.

PHOENIX — Kahleah Copper scored a career-high 38 points and combined with Sophie Cunningham for the final 16 points as the Phoenix Mercury rallied after blowing a 10-point fourth-quarter lead to beat the Atlanta Dream 88-85 on Saturday night.

Cheyenne Parker-Tyus scored 11 points and Allisha Gray 10 in the fourth quarter as the Dream, down 70-60 with 8:43 left, rallied to lead 81-74 at the 4:11 mark. A Parker-Tyus layup produced Atlanta’s first lead of the game 73-72.

Cunningham responded with a triple and Copper’s four free throws brought the Mercury within 83-81 with 1 1/2 minutes left. After an offensive foul on Tina Charles, Copper found Cunningham on the left side for a three-pointer and the lead with 1:11 left. Natasha Cloud then blocked a Rhyne Howard attempt and Copper converted it into a layup for an 86-83 lead in 28.1 seconds.

Parker-Tyus again made it a one-point game, but Copper responded and Howard missed a three-point attempt to tie it.

Diana Taurasi scored 15 points and Cunningham 10 for the Mercury (1-1), who gave Nate Tibbetts his first WNBA victory.

Gray finished with 22 points, Howard had 21 and Parker-Tyus 18 for the Dream (1-1)

Phoenix led from the start, scoring the first seven points and leading 24-15 after one quarter and 43-37 at the half.

Copper and Taurasi combined to score 23 points, but Howard held the Dream to 17, going 4 of 5 on 3-pointers.

Atlanta closed the third quarter on a 7-2 run to shave another point off Phoenix’s lead and trailed 65-60 entering the fourth quarter, despite Copper scoring 16 of Mercury’s 22 points.

At halftime the Mercury unveiled banners for their Ring of Honor members: head coach and general manager Cheryl Miller and players Penny Taylor, Bridget Pettis, Jennifer Gillom and Michele Timms. Four were inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame in 2006, while Taylor, who along with Taurasi played on all three Mercury championship teams, was inducted in 2017.

AP WNBA: https://apnews.com/hub/wnba-basketball

arizona sports

The city of Phoenix is ​​home to four major professional sports league teams; The Arizona Cardinals of the NFL, the Phoenix Suns of the NBA, the Phoenix Mercury of the WNBA and the Arizona Diamondbacks of the MLB.

The Cardinals have made State Farm Stadium in Glendale their own home turf and the Footprint Center in downtown Phoenix is ​​home to the Suns and Mercury. The Arizona Rattlers of the Indoor Football League play at the Desert Diamond Arena in Glendale.

Phoenix also has a soccer team with the USL’s Phoenix Rising FC, which plays at Phoenix Rising FC Stadium in Phoenix.

The Valley hosts several major sporting events each year, including college football’s Fiesta Bowl and Guaranteed Rate Bowl; the PGA Tour’s most attended event, the WM Phoenix Open; NASCAR events each spring and fall, including championship weekend in November; and Cactus League Spring Training for 15 Major League Baseball franchises.

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