Game #32 – Tulsa Shock vs San Antonio Silver Stars Game Preview + Recap

Riquna Williams of the WNBA's Tulsa Shock
Riquna Williams had a historical game with a WNBA record of 51 points as the Shock defeated the Silver Stars 98-65 in San Antonio at the AT&T Center. Photo courtesy of Elaine Thompson/AP

It’s been nearly a week since they last played, but as I have stated in my previous post, I just didn’t have time this week to write the preview or recap. Heck, I didn’t watch this game as I was out doing some errands on my Sunday afternoon. This is also known as a historical game in terms of context because Riquana Williams had 51 points for the Shock! 51!  51 points is pretty ridiculous and it’s been difficult to do since Lauren Jackson last had 47 points back in 2007.  In terms of this game however, both teams weren’t in the playoffs so they weren’t playing for much unless you count lottery odds for the 2014 draft. I didn’t write a preview for this game, so I have combined my preview, along with my recap + notes and observations.

 PREVIEW

The Stars need a win badly as they host the Tulsa Shock who face similar problems as the Silver Stars. The Stars have now dropped their 2nd game in a row as well as the playoffs and a win would avoid being the worst team in the Western Conference. The Stars are 7-8 at home and have a 2-1 lead in the 4 game series with the Shock. The Shock are also without Liz Cambage who has left the team for Australia as she suffered a knee injury in the game against Phoenix.

THREE KEYS TO THE GAME

1.  Be balanced offensively – The Stars had 3 players in double figures and 2 players near to double digits. They will need to do more of the same if they want to win this game.

2. Defend – Defend against one of the most unpredictable offenses in the WNBA. One night, the Shock look like playoff ready, the next night they look like a rebuilding team, etc. It will be a challenge and the San Antonio Silver Stars have to be ready to handle whatever Shock offense shows up.

3. No X Factor – Make sure no one from the Shock who doesn’t play well, does. Make sure that the Shock’s only player that plays well is Glory Johnson. The Stars have to make sure that they are able to rebound, and defend against any of the Shock’s non All Star players.

The game will tip off at 3:30 pm local time, 4:30 pm EST and 1:30 pm PST. The game will be on LiveAccess.  Now, that my preview is done, my game recap is written below, along with video of Riquna Williams historical 51 point game.

GAME RECAP

The Silver Stars are on the wrong side of history as second year guard Riquana Williams goes off for 51 points and the Stars lose to become the worst team in the Western Conference. They also lose their third straight game and the Shock even the season series 2-2. The Stars also fell to 7-9 at home this season.

As you can tell, from the video, she was ON FIRE. There was absolutely nothing the Silver Stars could do, although the last 14 points came in garbage time as Tulsa had effectively won the game at that point. 16 of her points came in the first half and 20 points in the third quarter.

NOTES + OBSERVATIONS

The WNBA finally has a 50+ point performance in the WNBA. This will go a long way as the players get better and better every year. It took 7 seasons before it happened, so it’s a rare sight to see. She also did this without OT, which is pretty impressive. It’s always great to see players achieving milestones that haven’t been done before. It’s also great that it happened in San Antonio because the San Antonio announcer (Andrew Monaco) has had a pretty extensive play by play career for  both the Stars and the Spurs of the NBA. The Stars also have a better LiveAccess feed as they fixed their technical problems that they had earlier in the season. It was also nice that it was in San Antonio because the crowd were genuine and really wanted for her to get to the 50 point milestone. San Antonio fans who were there were really classy because it’s rare when you see the opposing team fans cheering for you.

On the flip side, San Antonio just couldn’t defend well enough and it turned into a game in which San Antonio was leading for the most part and up until the 3rd quarter had a game. But then the Shock went a run and the Stars could not respond. This season it seems that San Antonio always has a bad quarter which leads to them losing the game.

Game #29 San Antonio Silver Stars vs Tulsa Shock Game Recap

That was probably the second most dominating game for the Silver Stars this season after their blowout win in Seattle. The Stars were able to lead in the second Q and were able to hold off the Tulsa Shock to win by a final score of 74-65. Jia Perkins led the team in scoring with 19 points. The Stars are now 11-18 on the season and 4-11 on the road. The Stars now head home to face the Sparks today in their final home game in August. My game recap is below, along with notes and observations.

GAME RECAP

Tulsa – August 30, 2013

The Stars suffered a heart break last second loss against Seattle which decreased their chance of going to the playoffs. However, their heart and fight didn’t let them give up on the season and it showed on the court Friday night. The Stars were still without Danielle Robinson while the Shock were without Liz Cambage (ankle sprain) and PG Angel Goodrich (illness).  The Silver Stars were down 1 after the first quarter 15-14 and it looked like it was going to be a battle between these two teams when the Silver Stars were able to take control in the game thanks to Shameka Christon who had 8 points in the second quarter. The Stars had their best quarter of the season outscoring the Shock by 15 points 28-13. The Stars had a commanding lead at half time 44-28 in which they shot 60% from the field and 40% from three. In the second half, the Shock responded to the Stars but the Stars were able to hold on firmly to the lead despite Tulsa’s repeated attempts to cut the lead down to 9 points. But, the Stars were just too much for the Shock and they were able to pull out the victory. SASS centers Jayne Appel, Danielle Adams and Kayla Alexander were too much for the Shock to handle as they had 26 points and 22 rebounds combined respectively. With their loss, the Shock were the first team to be eliminated from the playoffs for the fourth straight season. The Stars are now 11-18 and 4-11 on the road. The Stars face the Sparks on Military Appreciation Night at the AT&T Center tomorrow night.

GAME NOTES + OBSERVATIONS

  • Nice win for San Antonio after a tough loss against Seattle on Tuesday. The Stars looked like a playoff team against Tulsa who was missing their two starters.
  • The Stars got a balanced scoring effort from the team as Jia Perkins had 19 points alongside Shenise Johnson’s 13 points, Danielle Adams 10 points and Jayne Appel’s 8 points/11 rebs. They also got plenty of bench scoring with 22 points from Shameka Christon, Cathrine Kraayeveld and Kayla Alexander.
  • Despite the 7 TO’s from Skylar Diggins, I thought she played well for the Shock. She had 9 points, 7 assists and 5 rebounds. She controlled the game and even gave the Shock a lift to try to come back in this game.

Game #26 San Antonio Silver Stars vs Tulsa Shock Game Recap

The playoffs are fading away for the  Silver Stars this season as they lost to the Tulsa Shock by a final score of 73-67.  The Stars are now 9-17 this season and 3-11 on the road. It looks more and more likely that Seattle will be the last team to qualify for the 2013 Western Conference playoffs. My game recap of the game is below along with notes from the game.

GAME RECAP

TULSA

August 23, 2013

The Silver Stars knew heading into Tulsa that getting into the playoffs over Seattle was going to be tough. And now with a loss against Tulsa, it became even more difficult. The Silver Stars streak of going to the playoffs since 2007 will most likely end in 2013. The Silver Stars were playing the game without their All Star and WNBA assists leader Danielle Robinson as she was a game time decision. However, she did travel to Tulsa. The Stars struggled in the first half as they couldn’t score and Tulsa took full advantage of it and led 18-8 after the first quarter. The second quarter featured much of the same with the Stars struggling to score for minutes at a time and the Shock stretched their lead 40-22 at half time. It was the Silver Stars second straight bad 1st half of play. The third and fourth quarter finally saw the Silver Stars play defense, and made Elizabeth Cambage work for her points. The Stars managed to get the lead down to single digits many times, but didn’t have enough time to pull out the come back win and the Shock survived to win 73-67. Elizabeth Cambage and Glory Johnson both combined for 35 points and 12 rebounds for Tulsa while Shameka Christon had a season high 18 points and Shenise Johnson had 13 points and 8 rebounds to lead San Antonio. The Silver Stars and the Shock play a week from now and the series is tied at 1 game apiece. The Silver Stars play a home and home series next against Seattle which starts on Sunday.

NOTES + OBSERVATIONS

  • There were two games in that game. The first half featured the Shock’s ability to play well dictated through their talented center in Liz Cambage and All Star Glory Johnson. In the first half, the Stars lack of depth showed as well as inability to score in quarters this season whether Danielle Robinson plays or not.
  • In the second half, the game featured SASS ability to play through adverse situations and how they’ve responded to them this season. It featured SASS defense on Liz Cambage, SASS’s players playing gritty and how they usually play at home. It also featured Tulsa’s inability to close out games and their youth definitely was in focus. If SASS had more time, they would’ve pulled out the comeback win.
  • Nice to see the young players from SA play with more time. I’ve seen glimpses of good post play from Kayla Alexander, some good moments from Davellyn White and a little bit of promise from Chelsea Poppens. I’ve seen Shenise Johnson (despite her ups and downs) become a better player than she was when she was a rookie last year.
  • Glad the game was on FSSW and not the regular Tulsa feed. I’ve heard interesting things from people who’ve watched the Tulsa feed this season. Also, it’s remarkable how different TV games are then those without TV. Wow. I wish all 34 games were on TV for every team in the league. 
  • Despite out rebounding 36-23, they still lost. Rebounding is still only a part of the story. In the end, all it matters is the final score.
  • I really hope Danielle Robinson can play next game. She’s having one heck of a stellar season despite the team’s record and I hope she finishes the season on a strong note.
  •  

Game #26 San Antonio Silver Stars vs Tulsa Shock Game Day Preview

The Silver Stars are on the road again as they face the last place Tulsa Shock. The Stars and the Shock, despite their records still have a shot of getting into the playoffs albeit a long one. The Stars will try to go for just their fourth road win of the season while the Shock will try to win just their sixth home game of the season. The Stars are currently leading the series 1-0 with 3 games left to play in the series, including this one. After tonight, the Silver Stars only have 3 road games left to play. The Stars are 3-10 on the road. Other good news is that Danielle Robinson who is with the team in Tulsa will most likely play which is great news because she was sorely missed in the second half against Indiana last game.

Probable Starting Lineups for the Silver Stars

PG – Danielle Robinson (game time decision)

SG – Jia Perkins

SF – Shenise Johnson

F/C – Danielle Adams

C – Jayne Appel

Probable Starting Lineups for the Tulsa Shock

PG – Angel Goodrich

SG – Candice Wiggins

SF – Nicole Powell

PF – Glory Johnson

C – Liz Cambage

THREE KEYS TO THE GAME

1. Defend the duo – Liz Cambage and Glory Johnson are Tulsa’s two best players and the two together are both terrific front court players. The Silver Stars will need to help Danielle Adams and Jayne Appel in double and tripling both players to make sure that both are not as effective in the game tonight.

2. No X Factor –  Riquna Williams has only played 19 games this season but every time she comes off the bench, she is a capable 20 point scorer.  Roneeka Hodges, can also go off as well as Nicole Powell.  If the Stars can manage to hold off an X factor then they can win an important road game.

3. 4 FULL QUARTERS – The Silver Stars need to play four full quarters and be able to be effective both offensively and defensively to offset the Shock’s chances of winning this game. The Shock will be hungry so the Stars must come prepared otherwise it will be another loss on the road.

The game will be at 7 pm local time, 8 pm EST and 5 pm PST in Tulsa at the BOK Center. The game will be available on Live Access

Game #20 San Antonio Silver Stars vs Tulsa Shock Game Recap

Jayne Appel goes in for a layup against Elizabeth Cambage. San Antonio won against Tulsa 69 – 65 at the AT&T Center. Photo courtesy of Daniel Clarke Evans, NBAE/Getty Images

Well, that was some kind of game wasn’t it? I’m just happy that the game is over. San Antonio won its 7th game and are now tied with Tulsa in terms of wins. Because Tulsa has played 2 more games and have lost both of them, San Antonio moves ahead into 5th place. San Antonio is now 5-5 at home.  The game recap is below, followed by the usual notes and observations from the game.

GAME RECAP

ANEELA KHAN

SAN ANTONIO – AUGUST 4TH 2013

Coming into this game, San Antonio suffered another blow out loss to Minnesota on the road. After having one of the worst road records in the WNBA, San Antonio was looking forward to playing at the AT&T Center.  The Silver Stars were able to hang on and win against Tulsa, one of their key playoff rivals and win just their seventh game of this season.  The Silver Stars were led by Danielle Robinson who had 19 points and 9 assists, Jia Perkins who had 18 points but it was Jayne Appel’s performance that ultimately gave the Silver Stars the win.  The game started off with Tulsa scoring the first 5 points before San Antonio went on a 10 – 0 run.  San Antonio was up by the end of the 1st quarter 22- 15. In the second quarter, Liz Cambage began to score and the Shock went on a run of their own and led at half time 35-33. The third quarter featured many runs. Tulsa started out hot by giving the ball to Liz who was able to score and were up early 43-33 in the third quarter. San Antonio was able to come back and tie the game going into the fourth quarter at 55 apiece.  The fourth quarter was where Jayne Appel had her impact. She was able to defend Liz Cambage well, and rebounded well for the fourth straight game. She also banked in a three pointer which was needed as the Silver Stars had trouble scoring for much of the fourth quarter.  Despite Tulsa’s efforts to bring the game closer, San Antonio was able to hang on and win.

 

NOTES + OBSERVATIONS

  • That was one UGLY game. Not pretty at all. Both teams shot 38% from the floor and TUL had 25 FT attempts, 12 of them which they missed. TUL had 19 turnovers which lead to 22 of SAN points.
  • Danielle Robinson continues her stellar play. She had 19 points and 9 assists and was able to bother both of the Shock guards and keep them from having an impact.
  • Jayne Appel was the player of the game. She had 9 points (although she missed an easy layup), 13 rebounds, 3 steals, 3 assists and 3 blocks. San Antonio needed her performance in order to win this game. If Jayne continues to play like this for the rest of the season and next year, she’ll be in the running for Most Improved.
  • Jia Perkins also had a bounce back performance with 18 points
  • Glory Johnson is an work horse. Literally. I can see why she was an All – Star this year. This is the first time I’ve seen her play and she truly grabs every rebound she can, is a good post player and gets to the free throw line quite frequently. I even think she should be the MVP candidate over Liz Cambage because of her consistency.  I can also see why alot of WNBA fans are becoming fans of Glory Johnson. She’s a good player, there’s no doubt about that.
  • Liz Cambage is a game changer. Her ability to block shots and alter the way a team plays, is quite remarkable. Only two players can be game changers in the league and that’s Liz Cambage and Brittney Griner.

 

San Antonio now plays on Tuesday against the Minnesota Lynx before they go to Seattle to play a rare away and away game stand this weekend.

Game #20 San Antonio Silver Stars vs Tulsa Shock Game Day Preview

The Tulsa Shock are in town and the Silver Stars will play them four times this season, after meeting 5 times the previous 3 seasons.  The Shock are 7-14 on the season and have won their last 4 out of 5 games while the Silver Stars have won 2 out of their last 5 games. The Silver Stars and the Tulsa Shock are in a playoff race which is hard to imagine considering both teams are struggling this season.  The Silver Stars are 4-5 at home this season while the Shock are 2-8 on the road.

Projected Starting Lineups for the Tulsa Shock

G – Angel Goodrich

G – Candice Wiggins

F – Nicole Powell

PF – Glory Johnson

C – Elizabeth Cambage

Projected Starting Lineups for the San Antonio Silver Stars

PG – Danielle Robinson

SG – Jia Perkins

SF – Shenise Johnson

F/C – Danielle Adams

C- Jayne Appel

THREE KEYS TO THE GAME

1. KEEP THE POSTS FROM BEING EFFECTIVE – Glory Johnson was an All Star this year and is putting up terrific numbers. She’s currently averaging 16.3 points and 9.8 rebounds while Elizabeth ‘Liz’ Cambage is averaging 15 points and 8 rebounds.  These two together have been very effective in the last couple of games for Tulsa. San Antonio will need to defend them as best as possible and while it might be hard to stop them from scoring, they can at least make it harder for them to score. Jayne Appel will have her hands full guarding Liz Cambage so Danielle Adams will need to guard Glory Johnson

2. KEEP OTHER PLAYERS IN CHECK – San Antonio will need to make sure other than Glory or Liz, no other player has a good game. San Antonio will need to keep Tulsa’s guards from penetrating and making sure they don’t make enough perimeter shots.  Defend them well and San Antonio will win the game.

3. BALANCED SCORING – This goes without saying. San Antonio needs balanced scoring from everyone and every one needs to contribute in order to win. It’s as simple as that.

The game will be at 3:30 pm local time at the AT&T Center. The game will be on LiveAccess.