June 23, 1997 in Sports

Pettis Helps Phoenix Win As Record Crowd Looks On

Associated Press
 

WNBA

Bridget Pettis scored 17 points, including the first basket in franchise history, and the Phoenix Mercury beat the Charlotte Sting 76-59 Sunday in the inaugural WNBA game for both.

The game drew a crowd of 16,102 - the largest to attend a women’s professional game in the United States. The previous standard was set the day before, when 14,284 watched the Sparks and New York Liberty in the WNBA opener in Los Angeles.

Pettis, a shooting guard who averaged 25 points in four pro seasons overseas, was 5 of 12 from the field before twisting her right ankle and leaving the game with 6:02 to play.

Toni Foster added 14 points for the Mercury.

Charlotte’s Andrea Stinson had 11 of her 18 points over the final 9 minutes. But she didn’t get started until after the Sting missed their first 13 shots of the second half, allowing Phoenix to take a 57-33 lead.

The Mercury, who led 44-30 at halftime, had the game wrapped up by the time Penny Moore made a layup on Charlotte’s 14th field-goal attempt with 10:30 left to play.

Pettis had 13 points in the game’s first 13 minutes.

Mercury 76, Sting 59

Charlotte (59) - Bullett 3-8 2-2 8, Stinson 8-20 1-1 18, Mapp 2-5 6-8 10, Suber 2-9 0-0 6, D.Williams 1-6 0-0 2, Moore 2-7 0-0 4, Manning 0-4 2-2 2, Vukadinovic 1-1 0-0 3, Congreaves 2-5 2-2 6, Artis 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 21-65 13-15 59.

Phoenix (76) - Jackson 1-2 0-0 2, Foster 6-7 2-2 14, Gillom 1-4 2-2 4, Pettis 5-12 4-4 17, Timms 3-10 1-2 8, Ambers 0-1 1-4 1, Askamp 2-7 0-0 4, Lieberman-Cline 3-8 0-0 8, Webb 3-8 2-5 9, T.Williams 4-8 0-0 9. Totals 28-67 12-19 76.

Charlotte 30 29 - 59

Phoenix 44 32 - 76

3-Point goals-Charlotte 4-14 (Suber 2-5, Vukadinovic 1-1, Stinson 1-4, Bullett 0-1, D. Williams 0-3), Phoenix 8-19 (Pettis 3-6, Lieberman-Cline 2-4, T.Williams 1-1, Webb 1-2, Timms 1-6). Fouled out-None. Rebounds-Charlotte 41 (Stinson 9), Phoenix 51 (Foster 8). Assists-Charlotte 14 (Stinson 7), Phoenix 23 (Timms 6). Total fouls-Charlotte 19, Phoenix 16. A-16,102.

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