Christon, Liberty surprise ShockAug 25, 2007 - 2:39 AM NEW YORK (Ticker) -- Shameka Christon and the New York Liberty were not afraid of the big, bad defending champions.
Christon scored 16 points and tied a club playoff-record with 15 rebounds as the Liberty crushed the Detroit Shock, 73-51, in Game One of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Friday.
Cathrine Kraayeveld and newly minted WNBA Most Improved Player Janel McCarville each scored 13 points for New York, which turned a game deadlocked at halftime into a blowout in the second half.
It was the largest margin of victory in a playoff game in New York Liberty history.
Detroit, which won the WNBA title in 2006, had the best record in the league (24-10), but had split its four games vs. New York, including an 85-84 loss here on August 12, part of a season-ending, four-game losing streak for the Shock.
With the score tied, 25-25, at the start of the third quarter, Christon made the first basket in a 17-4 run in the opening 4:45 of the period. The spurt was capped by Christon's 3-pointer to give New York a 41-29 lead.
After a timeout by the Shock, the Liberty went on a 9-2 spurt, capped by Tiffany Jackson's layup with 3:04 left in the period to make it 50-31.
Christon, who shot 5-of-10 from the floor, scored 10 points in the quarter while Kraayeveld added eight in the period.
Deanna Nolan scored 16 points for Detroit, which shot only 33 percent (21-of-63) compared to 40 percent (26-of-65) for New York.
Game Two shifts to The Palace of Auburn Hills on Sunday.
NEW YORK 73 FINAL
Aug 24 9:25 PM
NEW YORK 53 END, 3RD QTR
Aug 24 9:00 PM
NEW YORK 25 HALFTIME
Aug 24 8:22 PM
NEW YORK 14 END, 1ST QTR
Aug 24 7:57 PM
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