NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Tina Charles scored 15 points, Asjha Jones had 14 and the Connecticut Sun rallied for a 66-59 victory over the New York Liberty on Friday night.
Renee Montgomery scored 10 of her 12 points in the fourth quarter as the Sun (7-5) closed with a 10-0 run to snap a two-game skid. Connecticut coach Mike Thibault got his 167th career victory, tying him with Anne Donovan and Michael Cooper for second place in WNBA history.
Kia Vaughn had 15 points and nine rebounds to lead New York (8-6), which snapped a four-game winning streak. Nicole Powell scored 13 points, Cappie Pondexter had 11 and rookie reserve Alex Montgomery added 10.
Renee Montgomery had a tying three-point play and Jones hit a jumper with 5:51 left in the fourth quarter to give the Sun a 58-56 lead.
After Pondexter made a 3 to put New York back ahead, Connecticut scored the next six points to take a 64-59 lead on Jones' two free throws with 3:02 remaining.
About 1½ minutes later, Powell stole a pass by Renee Montgomery, ran down the court, avoided the defender and then missed a layup. She got the rebound on the left side of the baseline, stepped behind the 3-point line and missed the shot.
Renee Montgomery hit a jumper on the other end to stretch the Sun's lead to seven with 1:13 left, and she added a layup in the final seconds.
Danielle McCray's three-point play started an 8-1 run as the Sun took a 44-36 lead on Charles' jumper with 5:39 to go in the third quarter.
Vaughn had seven points, including the go-ahead three-point play, during the Liberty's ensuing 14-3 run that gave them a three-point lead with 1:21 left in the third.
The teams played close in the first half with neither team leading by more than five points.
The Liberty led 7-2 about 1½ minutes into the game, before the Sun scored the next seven points to take a two-point lead about 3 minutes later.
After Pondexter's jumper gave New York a 21-20 lead in the opening minute of the second quarter, Connecticut scored six consecutive points to take a five-point lead on Tan White's 3-pointer with 7:41 left in the period.
Rookie reserve Alex Montgomery scored eight consecutive Liberty points during one stretch, including a tiebreaking 3 that put New York ahead 31-28 with under 4 minutes left in the first half.
Kara Lawson's three-point play with about 25 seconds left gave the Sun a 34-33 lead at the break.
Charles led Connecticut with 11 points on 5-for-7 shooting over the first 20 minutes. Powell had 10 points, including two 3s, for New York.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.
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