What was supposed to be a regular midseason game in the WNBA turned historic on Tuesday afternoon. The Dallas Wings squared off against the New York Liberty, and Wings center Liz Cambage went on quite the scoring spree.
In the process, Cambage set the WNBA’s single-game scoring record, finishing with 53 points to help lead her team to a 104-87 win. Cambage was remarkably efficient, going 17-for-22 from the field with a near-perfect 15-for-16 mark from the the free throw line and a blistering 4-for-5 clip from downtown.
She also managed to pick up the record in dramatic fashion, as Cambage knocked down one of those threes with just under a minute remaining in the game to secure the record.
The previous record of 51 points was set by Riquna Williams back in 2013. In setting the mark, Cambage joined some pretty elite company among the best scoring performances in league history. The 6’8 Australian center added 10 rebounds and five blocks to her impressive stat line, making her the first first NBA or WNBA player to drop 50 points and secure 10 rebounds on that efficient of shooting in a game since 1996, when some guy named Michael accomplished the feat.
Cambage was the No. 2 overall pick by the Tulsa Shock in 2011 out of Padua College in Australia, but has spent the last few years playing overseas before returning to the WNBA in February of this year. She talked about her journey in her walk-off interview, saying she felt vindicated by her performance in response to the doubters who’ve questioned whether she can succeed in the WNBA.
“I’ve had big numbers in China, I’ve had big numbers in Australia,” Cambage said. “I’ve heard a lot of people say I could never have big numbers here in the WNBA, so I guess this game was for y’all.”