Fever light up scoreboard for first win of 2020 Season

Basketball Sports WNBA

BRADENTON, Fla. – The Indiana Fever (1-1) held off a late rally from the Phoenix Mercury for a 106-100 win on Wednesday night. The 106 points scored by the Fever tie the second most points scored in a regular season game in franchise history and was the ninth time the Fever reached the 100-point plateau in a regular season game.

In a fourth quarter which saw four lead changes, Fever guard Julie Allemand inbounded the ball with 17 seconds remaining to preserve a three-point lead, but the errant pass found Mercury (0-2) guard Bria Hartley who gave it up to Skylar Diggins-Smith. In an effort to get the ball on the rim, Diggins-Smith’s layup did not fall, but was fouled from behind by Tiffany Mitchell and went to the free throw line hoping to reduce the Fever deficit to one with only seconds remaining. Diggins-Smith converted only one of two at the charity stipe and the lead became insurmountable for the Mercury to overcome.

A pair of free throws to follow from both Allemand and Mitchell sealed the deal for the Fever to get into the win column for the first time in the 2020 abbreviated regular season. Mitchell poured in 22 of her career-high 24 points in the second half on 6-of-12 shooting and an 8-for-8 clip from the free throw line. She ended the night 10-of-10 from the free throw line.

Candice Dupree and Teaira McCowan kept pace with Mitchell’s scoring efforts throughout the evening. Dupree pitched in 23 points and made multiple 3-point field goals in a regular season game for the first time since August 28, 2009, as a member of the Chicago Sky against the New York Liberty. She also added nine rebounds in a game-high 36:39 of action.

McCowan came off the bench to record her 12th career double-double performance, highlighted by 20 points and 13 rebounds against one of the league’s preeminent inside threats in Brittney Griner.

Wednesday night was the third time in franchise history three players (Mitchell, Dupree and McCowan) all scored at least 20 points in a regular season game for Indiana. The last time it happened was on September 14, 2008 against the Mercury led by Katie Douglas, Ebony Hoffman and Tammy Sutton-Brown.

Kelsey Mitchell continued her league-leading efforts beyond the arc on Wednesday night as well, ending 4-of-7 from long range and 18 points. Her nine made 3-point field goals leads the WNBA and she is shooting 64.3 percent after two games.