Suffering three losses in four games is noteworthy for a successful team like the Connecticut Sun, but it can’t be blamed on Jonquel Jones.
The team’s leading scorer and rebounder will try to get her team back on track Sunday when they host the Washington Mystics in a battle of two of the WNBA’s top teams in Uncasville, Conn.
Jones, who enters averaging 15.1 points and 9.2 rebounds per game, is coming off a 24-point, 11-rebound effort Wednesday night in a 91-83 defeat at Chicago. She also contributed five steals, but it wasn’t enough to help the Sun (13-7) overcome a 32-16 first-quarter deficit.
Nevertheless, Jones is not only producing, but scoring efficiently. She is shooting 50.7 percent from the field and 35.5 percent on 3-pointers while hitting 81.3 percent at the foul line.
“She’s the core of our organization and she’s an incredible teammate and person,” team captain Jasmine Thomas of Jones. “JJ’s passion is contagious, along with her competitiveness and work ethic.”
For Jones and the Sun to return to form, though, they’ll have to overcome a recent trend of slow starts. In recent losses to Washington, New York and Chicago, they’ve been outscored by a whopping 38 points in the first quarter.
As for the Mystics (13-9), they haven’t played since walloping Atlanta 92-74 Tuesday night at home. They jumped out to a 32-20 first-quarter lead and built it to 73-49 after three periods, enabling them to close out June with a 6-6 mark.
Eleven different players scored for Washington, led by Natasha Cloud’s 18 points. Elena Delle Donne, who’s the team’s leading scorer with 15.3 points per game, added 11 in just 19 minutes. Ariel Atkins matched her scoring average with 15.
Cloud, who is averaging a career-high 11.0 points and 7.3 assists, is playing with a chip on her shoulder after being left off the All-Star team.
“People don’t respect that I impact a full stat sheet,” she said. “I play both ends of the floor.”
–Field Level Media