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Recap: Sun outshine Mercury in Taurasi’s return

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Diana Taurasi made her 2019 debut, but the Sun found their groove in the second half and ended their five-game losing streak with a 79-64 victory.

Phoenix Mercury v Connecticut Sun
Alyssa Thomas scored 20 points and gathered 10 rebounds, helping the Sun end their five-game losing streak.
Photo by Brian Babineau/NBAE via Getty Images

Despite trailing by six at the half, the Connecticut Sun outscored the Phoenix Mercury 49-28 in the second half en route to a 79-64 win, snapping their five-game losing streak.

Diana Taurasi, who underwent back surgery on April 24, made her 2019 season debut. She failed to make a basket from the floor but was able to get to the free throw line, where she was 5-of-6. Taurasi also assisted on four baskets.

The Sun shot over 40 percent for the first time since their one-point loss to Dallas on June 26. Connecticut’s 15 offensive rebounds led to plenty of extra opportunities. It outscored Phoenix in second-chance points 15-9.

Although the Sun lost the turnover battle 17-13, they were more effective at converting turnovers into points, finishing with an 18-12 advantage.

Alyssa Thomas led the Sun with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Jonquel Jones registered her first double-double since June 23 with 13 points and 11 rebounds. Courtney Williams recorded her sixth career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The scoring was well-distributed for Connecticut: Six players, including all five starters, finished in double figures.

After trailing at the half, the Sun opened the third quarter with a 20-1 run, finishing it with a 57-48 lead. Phoenix responded with a 6-0 run to open the final quarter of play, but the Sun countered with their own 16-4 run to open the game up 73-58.

The Sun double- and triple-teamed Brittney Griner, holding her to 10 points on 4-of-12 shooting. DeWanna Bonner scored 20 points, but on 10-of-22 shooting, including 0-of-6 from three. Still, this marks Bonner’s eighth game of the season with at least 20 points.

Up next

Phoenix ends its three-game road trip on Sunday against Minnesota. The Mercury lost to the Lynx by a basket in their last meeting. Connecticut travels to Indiana on Sunday, hoping to end its four-game road losing streak. The Sun beat the Fever easily in their last meeting, but that game took place in Connecticut.