The Connecticut Sun suffered a narrow 71-68 loss to the New York Liberty on Wednesday at Mohegan Sun Arena, marking another regular-season defeat to their Eastern Conference rivals. Sun head coach Stephanie White did not hold back in her post-game assessment, emphasizing the critical mistakes that cost them the game.

“You just can’t make a lot of mistakes, and you’ve got to be able to match their scoring,” White said, per Emily Adams of the Hartford Courant. “They have a lot of weapons on both ends of the floor. When they go with that big lineup, they’ve got length at four or five positions, and that creates some challenges defensively because of what they can do. I always feel really good about our defensive effort, but we’ve got to be able to score with them.”

The Sun struggled offensively, managing just 37.1% shooting from the field in the first half. Meanwhile, the Liberty shot 54.5% before halftime, with UConn legend Breanna Stewart making her first four attempts and leading her team’s early offensive surge.

“You play with pride, and we gave a team 29 points and they shot at 70% in the first quarter,” White said. “I felt like our attention to detail got a little better, I’m not sure consistently throughout the course of the game, but for the most part. But you can’t spot a team like New York 10 points in the first quarter. They’re too good. They’re too deep. They make you pay for mistakes, and they did that to us today.”

DeWanna Bonner, Brionna Jones stand out for Sun

Connecticut Sun forward DeWanna Bonner (24) celebrates after the team's win against the Chicago Sky in a WNBA game.
© Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Despite the loss, DeWanna Bonner stood out for Connecticut, continuing her recent hot streak from beyond the arc. She made three 3-pointers early on, scoring a team-high eight points by the end of the first quarter. Brionna Jones led the Sun with 13 points in the first half and effectively defended former MVP Jonquel Jones, who managed only two points for the Liberty.

However, New York’s superstars, including Stewart and All-Star guard Sabrina Ionescu, combined for 24 points in the first half. Stewart also dominated the boards, adding a game-high eight rebounds to her 12 points on 5-for-6 shooting.

Alyssa Thomas, a key player for the Sun, struggled against Stewart. She was held scoreless in the first half and finished the game with just three points, her lowest-scoring outing since 2020, although she did contribute nine rebounds and eight assists.

“Looking at 1-for-4 and three points is so limiting of what AT brings to us on both ends of the floor,” White said. “We’ve got to use her a little bit more as an off-ball screener when they plug the paint like they did tonight with Stewie. There are certain matchups that are tough, and Stewie is one of them.”

The Liberty started the third quarter strong, opening on a 9-0 run and pushing the Sun into a double-digit deficit. Tyasha Harris ended Connecticut’s scoring drought and helped bring the Sun back within striking distance. Bonner’s three-pointer gave Connecticut a one-point lead with under four minutes left, but Ionescu’s late-game heroics secured the win for New York.

Ionescu led New York with 21 points, while Stewart finished with a double-double of 18 points and 14 rebounds. For the Sun, Jones added 17 points and eight rebounds, with Bonner leading the team with 22 points and nine rebounds.