It looked like the game was over.
Washington went on a 12-2 run to open the fourth quarter to turn their 76-71 lead into an 88-73 lead with 5:52 left to go. That is absolutely the kind of thing that can end a game quicker than you want it to end.
And yet, Jacki Gemelos sparked a run for Connecticut.
In her first WNBA appearance since September of 2015, Gemelos knocked down two threes right away and DeWanna Bonner chipped in another. Those nine points were a big component of a 16-3 explosion from the Sun that took just four minutes and 13 seconds off the clock. Bonner’s bomb made it a 91-89 game with 1:39 to play, and just like that, it’s like the first four minutes of the quarter never happened.
The problem is, of course, that Connecticut never scored again. The Mystics managed just three points in the final 90 seconds, all on free throws, but that was enough to fend off the Sun and their multiple chances to swipe the win. With the 94-89 loss, Connecticut is now 0-2 on the season.
Connecticut’s big two — DeWanna Bonner and Alyssa Thomas — were really great in this game. They went for 29 and 28 points respectively, with Thomas getting a double-double with 11 rebounds and Bonner just barely missing it. They also both played more than 38 minutes with Bonner never coming off the floor for the Sun. That’s really good stuff, but in a game where you had it in your hands, it’s clear that Connecticut is going to need more from everyone else.
Marquette’s very own Natisha Hiedeman was the #3 scorer on the night for the Sun, tallying eight points in her 22 minutes of action. She was 3-for-6 from the floor, which weirdly includes a miss on her lone three-point attempt of the night. Hiedeman also added four rebounds and two assists before fouling out in the closing seconds of the game.
Can I interest you in some Hiedeman-themed highlights?
Alley-oops in the Wubble, we see you #SCTop10— espnW (@espnW) July 28, 2020
(via @ConnecticutSun) pic.twitter.com/BXDwYkpB3j
Swaggy making it happen #SUNState pic.twitter.com/NK1m3fcqKh— Connecticut Sun (@ConnecticutSun) July 29, 2020
Up Next: The Sun will try for their first win of the season on Thursday night when they take on the Los Angeles Sparks. That game will come at you at 9pm Central time, and ESPN has the broadcast. The Sparks are 1-1 so far in the Wubble with a win over Phoenix and a loss to Chicago. Nneka Ogwumike is tops on the squad in scoring, but there are four Sparks players that have played in both games averaging at least 10 points per game.