Three the hard way. Not so fast my friends. Kayla McBride scored a career-high 31 points and the San Antonio Stars closed on a 22-4 run to beat the New York Liberty 93-81 on Tuesday night.

Bria Hartley scored 17 points and Sugar Rodgers added 16, but the Liberty had its 2-game winning streak snapped after being outscored 28-12 in the 4th quarter. The victory for the Stars, snapped a three-game losing streak and assured the Stars (4-21) would not finish with the WNBA’s worst single-season record. The 2011 Tulsa Shock went 3-31.

Trailing by 7 points at the half, New York opened the 2nd  half on a 13-0 run to take a 60-54 lead. The Liberty led by as many as 7 in the 2nd  half, but the Stars outscored New York 28-12 in the final period, using a 12-2 run to turn a 79-79 tie into a 91-81 advantage. Kayla McBride finished with 31 points to lead the Stars offensively.

“I think San Antonio played great” Tina Charles said after the lost. “Kudos to Kayla McBride to having a career high. They just wanted it more, they were hungry. In this league you don’t get lucky. We have been winning by 1 point, we have been having the same turnovers, and not controlling the things that we can control and it caught up to us tonight. You have to give credit to them, they kept playing and that is one thing about San Antonio that you have to respect is that they keep playing, no matter what the score is.”

Hard To Win Games Giving Up Second Chance Points

San Antonio finished with 22  2nd-chance points the most for a Liberty opponent this season. New York fell to 1-6 when being outscored in 2nd chance opportunities. That is something championship teams don’t allow to happen.

“I think we turned the ball over and gave them too many second chance opportunities.” Coach Laimbeer said after the game. “We had the game under control at that point [start of third]. We just couldn’t get enough going and we got tired. We have some tired players out there and we had to put subs in and they took advantage of it.”

Tina Charles Named Player Of The Month For a Record 10th Time

Tina Charles of the New York Liberty and Sylvia Fowles of the Minnesota Lynx, were named the WNBA’s Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month, respectively, for games played in July. This was Charles’ 10th time being player of the month, in her eight year WNBA career.

New York went 5-4 in July behind Charles, who ranked first among East players in scoring (22.2 ppg) and led the WNBA in rebounding (11.2 rpg).  In nine games, the 2012 WNBA MVP logged five double-doubles and scored at least 21 points seven times.  She also tied for seventh in the East in blocked shots (1.0 bpg).

Next Up For The Liberty?

New York concludes its 5-game road trip on Friday, August 4, when it faces the Los Angeles Sparks at the Staples Center. So far, the Liberty are 2-2 on this road trip.