DeWanna Bonner produced 17 points and 15 rebounds and the third-seeded Connecticut Sun put on an offensive clinic to beat the sixth-seeded Minnesota Lynx 90-60 in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series on Wednesday in Uncasville, Conn.
The Sun had 28 assists on 33 made field goals and set a playoff franchise record with 16 3-pointers on 30 attempts. A 21-3 Connecticut run during the second quarter made the difference.
It was the largest margin of victory in Sun playoff history, and Connecticut can close out the best-of-three series with one more win. The Sun will host Game 2 on Sunday afternoon.
Connecticut’s Rebecca Allen shot 5-for-6 from 3-point range and finished with 15 points, six rebounds and four steals. Tiffany Hayes added 14 points, going 4-for-6 from beyond the arc, and Alyssa Thomas tallied 15 points, 10 assists and five steals.
Tyasha Harris had 12 points off the bench for the Sun, going 3-for-3 from long distance.
Kayla McBride scored 16 points and Napheesa Collier had 14 for the Lynx, who shot just 21-for-60 overall (35 percent) and lost 19 turnovers that turned into 30 Sun points. Guard Lindsay Allen and forward Jessica Shepard missed the game due to injuries.
Hayes made two early 3-pointers to help the Sun establish a 14-5 lead. McBride scored the Lynx’s final nine points of the first frame, her driving floater with two seconds left trimming the margin to 18-16 after one quarter.
The Lynx took their first lead at 22-20 by starting the second quarter 6-for-6 on free throws as a team. However, Harris’ consecutive 3-pointers 49 seconds apart launched the Sun’s 21-3 run. DiJonai Carrington scored seven straight points in that stretch.
Allen’s 3-pointer with 11 seconds left gave the Sun a 46-32 halftime advantage. Connecticut went 5-for-6 from the arc as a team in the second quarter alone.
Hayes buried a triple and Bonner fed Thomas in transition to give Connecticut its first 20-point lead, 56-36, at the 7:05 mark of the third quarter. The Sun led 69-52 after three.
The result already in hand, Connecticut ran off 17 straight points during the fourth quarter, featuring three 3-pointers from Allen. Minnesota went scoreless for 7:12 until Diamond Miller made a triple with six seconds left. The Lynx managed just eight points in the final period.
–Field Level Media
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