McBride lifts Stars to win over Shock
SAN ANTONIO (AP) San Antonio guard Becky Hammon is well-versed in scoring and she can see great potential in Kayla McBride. The Stars rookie showed why the 16-year veteran holds her in such high regard.
McBride scored a season-high 30 points, including hitting the game-winning 3-pointer with 13.4 seconds left, to lead San Antonio to an 82-79 win over the Tulsa Shock on Tuesday night.
''I tell her to get ready when I have the ball, because I'm looking for her,'' Hammon said. ''She was great tonight.''
Skylar Diggins tied the game on a contested layup with 38.6 seconds remaining. McBride then threw in a 3 with 13.4 seconds as the Stars' bench and fans were screaming that the shot clock was about to expire. Diggins threw her hands up in dismay after the impromptu shot from her former Notre Dame teammate.
''Actually, that wasn't even the play, the play was different, but I was just trying to get the ball up,'' McBride said. ''I knew the shot clock was running down. We had to get a shot up at least, so I just kind of threw it up there. I was just as surprised as everybody else that it went in.''
Odyssey Sims' 3 at the buzzer rattled off the rim, giving San Antonio its second victory over Tulsa at home this month.
Glory Johnson scored 18 points, Diggins added 17 points and Sims 16 for Tulsa (0-3).
''I thought it was a hard fought game back and forth,'' Tulsa coach Fred Williams said. ''We kind of built a lead off and on, and the Stars came in and hit a couple of big 3s at the end.''
Danielle Adams had 10 points for the Stars (3-2).
Hammon finished with nine points and five assists in her first home game since Sept. 29, 2012 after missing all but one road game last season with a torn left ACL.
The 5-foot-6 guard was 3 for 4 from the field, including scooping a layup under the arms of the 6-foot-2 Jordan Hooper to put the Stars up 70-64 with 6:42 remaining.
''They were giving me a hard time, telling me it was vintage me in my 20s,'' Hammon said. ''It's just a matter of getting my feet. I'm still working on it. Just trying to pick my spots, being very selective in what I'm doing.''
Hammon's return has been made easier by the multiple scoring options the Stars now have, including McBride.
McBride doubled her season output Tuesday, finishing 10 for 14 from the field, including 4 for 6 on 3s. She entered the game averaging 8.5 points while shooting 10 for 34 from the field in her first four games.
''I feel like I've been pressing a little bit these last couple of games,'' McBride said. ''I give all credit to my teammates finding me in open spots where I was comfortable. I was knocking in shots. I was just trying to go out there and play and just take advantage of what I could do best.''