WNBA: Jonquel Jones named player of the week


Connecticut Sun forward Jonquel Jones (35) is guarded by Las Vegas Aces guard Chelsea Gray (12) and forward Dearica Hamby, right, during a WNBA basketball game in Las Vegas on Thursday, June 2, 2022. (Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun via AP)


Tribune sports journalist

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JONQUEL Jones concluded May with a low season effort but opened June with season-highs in three straight games to earn WNBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week honors.

It was the 12th time in Jones’ five-year career that she had won the award and the first since September of the 2021 season.

Jones finished with 25 points, eight rebounds, six assists and three steals in the Connecticut Sun’s 93-86 win over the Seattle Storm on Sunday night at Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle, Washington.

After failing to reach the 20-point mark in the first nine games of the season, including back-to-back nine-point (May 28) and eight-point (May 31) games, Jones scored at least 20 points in the of the last three. Games.

During the week of May 30-June 5, Jones averaged 19.3 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks in 29.4 minutes per game.

Heading into Sunday’s contest, she finished with 20 points on 7-9 shooting and seven rebounds in a win over the Las Vegas Aces on June 2, followed by 24 points on 6-8 shooting and seven rebounds in a 92-88 win over the Phoenix Mercury on June 3.

The Storm led by no less than 13 points in the first half, had a 63-53 lead late in the third quarter and 67-61 early in the fourth quarter. Jones added a layup to the ceiling and an 8-0 run and gave the Sun their first lead since the first field goal of the game.

After a Storm basket, the Sun went on a 17-2 run to put the game away at the end of the fourth.

“I think the first half was the hardest part,” Jones said in his post-match availability. “Just getting our bodies really locked in and getting to that level of play.”

After winning three of four on the road and five or their last six, the Sun now leads the WNBA Eastern Conference at 9-3, one game behind the Las Vegas Aces (10-2) for the league’s best record. .

“I feel like in the past we knew we were a very good team. We knew when things were going well for us we were going to win a game. And I feel like we didn’t know not really how we were in terms of adversity, because in the past we kind of separated or things just didn’t feel the same, like that chemistry was going away, he said.

“And so I feel like that stretch that we just played, it showed us that we can win lousy games, that we can come back from deficits and still be able to stay in the game and win.

“And so, he’s definitely a good character builder for our team.”

Jones leads Connecticut in scoring at 15.6 points and one block per game, and is second on the team in rebounds per game at 8.3.

The Sun return home to Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut on Wednesday night in the first of a four-game homestand when they host the Indiana Fever.


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