Kaitlyn Clark struggles in WNBA debut as Connecticut Sun dominates Indiana Fever

The Connecticut Sun’s smothering defense torpedoed the highly anticipated pro basketball debut of Indiana Fever rookie Kaitlyn Clark.

Clarke, The Two-time National Collegiate Player of the YearClark struggled for most of her first WNBA regular-season game as she worked for everyone. 20 points Connecticut won convincingly 92-71.

“There’s a lot to learn from this; it’s a first,” Clarke told reporters after the game. “There are going to be good people and there are going to be bad people.”

In the sun First of all Home-opener sales since 2003The fans at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville split their allegiances, cheering for both the hometown team and Clark in his much-celebrated pro debut. Women’s Basketball History.

The building roared as Clark drilled each of his four 3-pointers, but highlights were hard to come by. Connecticut held her to 25 turnovers, a game-high 10 turnovers and held her to just three assists.

“Obviously too many turnovers — that’s not going to get the job done,” Clark said. “There’s a lot to learn from this.”

He added: “I would have played a bit better tonight.”

He picked up a pair of touch fouls in the first quarter, leading to an early break on the bench. While she was on the floor, Connecticut’s DeJonai Carrington and her teammates gave Clark, the No. 1 draft pick in 2024, little room to operate.

Clark didn’t score his first points until 5:24 remained in the second quarter. She got a little more offensive in the second half, scoring 13 points after halftime.

But turnovers were still an issue, with five giveaways in each half.

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“I thought it would take a while to settle into the game,” Clarke said. “I thought the second half was pretty good, minus a few turnovers.”

Fever coach Christy Sides said Clark was not responsible for all 10 turnovers.

“We’ve got to help her. We’ve got to do a better job of getting back to the ball,” Sides said.

Regardless of the national spotlight shining on Mohegan Sun Arena, Carrington insisted Tuesday was just another day at the Clark’s defensive lockout office.

“That’s what they expect of me every night, whether it’s Caitlin or whoever we’re playing,” he said. “This is the expectation. This is the standard.”

Sides said he believes Clark can adapt to the height and speed of elite defenders like Carrington.

The Suns “had a game plan against her, and it’s going to take some time for her to find that speed and speed and physicality,” Sides said. “We try to replicate that and replicate that in our practices with our training guys as much as we can. But it’s not the same.”

Carrington’s strong performance was marred only by leg cramps that sent her to the locker room for part of the second half.

“I need to hydrate better, so that’s what I have — less coffee,” she laughs.

Meanwhile, Connecticut senior DeWanna Bonner scored 20 points to move into 5th place on the WNBA’s all-time scoring list.

It’s Indiana sustains its faith Clark is looking to improve on a conference worst record of 13-27 last season.

The Fever’s home opener is set for Thursday at 7pm ET against last year’s WNBA runner-up, the New York Liberty. Cainbridge Fieldhouse In Indianapolis.

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The game will be streamed on Amazon Prime and televised locally on the NBC affiliate WTHR in Indianapolis and WWOR in and around New York City.

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