Liberty 80, Sparks 68

Story.

Box score.

The defense doesn’t seem to have improved one bit; Liberty had 35 rebounds to the Sparks’ 22.

Fans are chanting “Maya Moore” at times, in reference to their hope that we’ll get the first pick next year for finishing last this year.

Fans really tried to boost the team on tonight. They want something to cheer about so badly. It’s sad.

People that sit in the rows behind the Sparks bench and watch what goes on there said there was tension tonight.

A lot of season ticket holders and long-timers left early.

I don’t have anything else to day; I’ve already said it.

Only three on the bench tonight: Chanel Mokango, Andrea Riley and Lindsay Wisdom-Hylton.

Liberty PG Leilani Mitchell responds to Marie Ferdinand-Harris’ pressure in the first quarter and gets the ball off to a teammate.

I guess this game was on TV, as Sparks Coach Jennifer Gillom was interviewed at the end of the first quarter while her assistant coach did huddle duties.

Kathy and Carla play with Carla’s son Jackson during the timeout.

Essence Carson (far right) knocks one down for the Liberty in the second quarter.

Michael Lockwood (long legs crossed) took in the game with his mother-in-law Christine Leslie, while his wife presumably did TV duties. Candace Parker’s mother Sara also brought granddaughter Lailaa (purple shirt).

Delisha Milton-Jones (far right) tries but misses in the third quarter.

Sparks co-owner Kathy Goodman is trying to stay optimistic.

Don’t know how I missed this great peace about Ace and Ice being out for the season. But it’s sad indeed.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Good finally meeting you last night, Sue.

    Y'know, watching last night's game I was reminded of something from this year's UCLA Women's Basketball Postseason Banquet. Nikki Caldwell was in the middle of some speech or other, and she interrupted herself mid-speech to ask the players (who were kind of scattered around the banquet hall), "What two things do I always stress?" And all the players unanimously droned in response, in a genuinely weary fashion like they'd had it drummed into them a billion times and were now tired of it: "defense and boards." It was kind of funny. And it occurs to me that, for whatever reason, the Sparks are essentially the opposite of that this year. It's like they're the anti-Bruins. Personnel-wise, they're kind of similar (both teams are undersized inside, both lack superstars and knock-down shooters). But the Bruins put together a very nice run on the strength of their defense and their glass play (I swear, it seemed like half the Bruin points this year came on put-backs). And the absence of same in Staples is kind of killing the Sparks this season.

    Now, I dunno, maybe you can't get wins on the WNBA level with just chaotic d and garbage retrieval. Maybe that just doesn't work in the pros. I genuinely don't know. But part of me (and maybe it's just the Bruin in me) would be very curious to see what this Sparks team would be like if it had Nikki Caldwell on the sidelines and big/little Jasmine Dixon down low.

    All of the above having been said, however, I just gotta say that my daughter and I had a great time in Staples, as we always do, and are looking forward to Saturday's game.

    Oh, last thing: and this is neither here nor there, but this is the first time I've seen Mokango out on the court, and it's kind of fitting that (of all the Sparks players on the official roster), she's the only one without a weight listed. The laws of physics aside, she's so skinny I question whether she actually even *has* a weight. Someone get that girl to a Burger King, stat! It's hard to imagine her making much of an impact on this level with much more bulk and much, *much* more strength.

    Okay, that's all from me. See you on Saturday, and Go Sparks,

    Patrick Meighan
    Culver City, CA

  2. Great meeting you too, Patrick. Interesting but I have also wondered before (more than once) what the Sparks would be like with Nikki Caldwell at the helm. Without a doubt, they'd be off the chain.

    To put it bluntly, Gillom sucks.

  3. "To put it bluntly, Gillom sucks."

    Well, if you say so. I don't know enough about hoops to be able to intelligently critique her performance. It's clear this team is currently missing 3 very key on-court weapons that it had at its disposal this time last season, and certainly that's a major factor in the disappointing results thusfar that CJG has nothing to do with. But even given their limitations, could they be doing better than they're currently doing?

    Tough to say "no."

    But like I said, I don't know nothing about nothing. I really don't.

    Patrick Meighan
    Culver City, CA

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