What could have been a big time win, turned into a big time beat-down last night for the Indiana Fever. Game 1 of the best of three series saw the Indianapolis based lady ballers on the short end of a 72-56 shellacking. The team administering the lopsided lose was none other than the Fever’s biggest rival, the Detroit Shock.
Things were looking good for the Fever during the first 17 minutes of the game. During that time they never trailed, and twice extended their lead to 11 points. But with three minutes left in the first half, the Fever lost their cool on offense and settled for several low percentage passes and shots. This opened the door for the Shock, who closed out the second quarter with an 11-2 run. The run was capped-off by a three point basket with just 2.3 seconds left from Detroit rookie Shavonte Zellous, which cut the Fever’s lead to just two points at the half.
Things did not get any better for Circle City fans in the second frame. The Fever, who have been plagued by poor shooting all playoffs long, could not find the rim. The first half saw Indiana pushing the ball up the court, creating favorable match ups and easy fast-break points. While the second half showed a Fever team looking confused, slow and a tab bit intimidated.
Both teams have been touted for their defensive dominance all season long, but in game 1 only the Shock lived up to that billing. The Fever did make a late charge in the middle of the fourth quarter to cut the Shock’s lead to just four points. However, Detroit’s Deanna Nolan responded quickly with six straight points of her own and it was never close again. The Fever’s best player Tamika Catchings, was for the most part held in check by defensive double teams. Yet she still finished with 9 points and 11 rebounds. Former Purdue University standout Katie Douglas lead all Indiana players quietly with 16 points. The series comes home to Conseco Fieldhouse in downtown Indianapolis for game 2 Friday night and starts at 7 p.m.
Hey Indianapolis sports fans, be sure to check out Indianapolis funcityfinder.com tomorrow for a preview of both the Indiana Fever’s do-or-die game 2 and the Indianapolis Colts Sunday night match up with the Arizona Cardinals.