Shock vs. Mercury final score: Griner's career afternoon leads Phoenix to fifth straight victory

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

Brittney Griner set a new WNBA-record with 11 blocks in a strong showing after struggling in Indiana on Friday. The Mercury picked up their fifth straight victory by holding the Shock to 31% shooting.

Coming into Sunday's game, the Mercury were the hottest team in the WNBA having won four straight to take over sole possession of the best record in the league at 10-3. The Tulsa Shock on the other hand came into the game tied for fourth with the Los Angeles Sparks-- the same team to beat them the night before-- at 6-8. With a home record of 4-2 illustrating the team's difference in confidence at home, the Shock came out ready to play on this last afternoon in June.

Aided by two threes from Roneeka Hodges, who's been quiet of late, as well as 5 offensive boards to zero for Phoenix, the Shock were able to keep the Mercury from jumping out early. In the second quarter, the Shock continued to dominate the offensive glass, adding 6 more boards and five points to the lead to go into the half leading 37-31.  At the half, Tulsa was led by Hodges 8 points as well as 6 apiece from both Skylar Diggins and Glory Johnson. Phoenix had it's scoring spread across the five starters as no bench player was able to scratch. Brittney Griner, Candice Dupree and Diana Taurasi all had 7 points apiece.

Into the third quarter and in the midst of another battle, the same saviors that have come into play so far this year for the Mercury rang true once again. Penny Taylor scored 11 points in the third quarter and as a team, Sandy Brondello's team continues to be aggressive when shots aren't falling as they got to the line for 17 free throws, making 16. The fourth quarter began with two quick baskets from Griner and that seemed to set the tone for the duration of the 4th quarter as she finished the quarter with 8 points, 3 blocks and 3 boards in the deciding quarter.

The Mercury were able to secure the victory behind another strong defensive effort. In the 4th quarter alone, the Shock shot 4-20 (20%.) This game produced a solid bounce-back effort for Griner, who finished with 21 points, 8 rebounds and a WNBA-record 11 blocks. Penny Taylor continued her strong play of late with 17 points to go with 14 apiece from Taurasi and DeWanna Bonner. Tulsa was led by its young core trio of Sims, Diggins and Johnson with 16 points for each as Roneeka Hodges chipped in 12 points.

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