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Jun. 2—MOHEGAN — Connecticut Sun head coach Curt Miller was worried about how much energy his team had left in the tank prior to Tuesday’s game because they started this WNBA season with the league’s most taxing schedule.

Connecticut had just enough left to power past the Las Vegas Aces.

The Sun had four players score in double figures and used a fourth quarter run to beat Las Vegas, 74-67, and clinch the three-game season series at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Connecticut (7-2) had played a league-high nine games in 19 days. It had also played more road games (five) prior to Tuesday night, including three in one five-day stretch.

“Our message to everybody before this game was, ‘just empty the tank,'” Sun guard Briann January said. “‘Empty it, then we have a day off (Wednesday).’ I feel like everybody that came in played hard, played focused and gave it their all.

“We had that tough stretch (of the schedule), but we have a tougher team.”

Jonquel Jones scored nine of her 23 points at the free throw line with seven rebounds, three blocks and two steals for Connecticut. Fellow post Brionna Jones played nearly 36 minutes, many of them matched up against 6-foot-8 Liz Cambage defensively, and had 14 points, eight rebounds and two steals.

Jasmine Thomas added 11 points, six assists and four rebounds for the Sun and January scored 11.

It was the second time the Sun beat Las Vegas (5-3), which was favored to win the WNBA title in the league’s preseason GM poll.

Connecticut won at Las Vegas on May 23, 72-65.

“Big home win for us,” Miller said. “(I’m) really proud of our composure down the stretch. We learned (from) Minnesota (a 79-74 overtime loss Sunday). We had better clock management. We learned from that game on some of the things we didn’t do real well in the last few minutes.”

Cambage scored a game-high 28 points with seven rebounds and three blocks for the Aces. A’ja Wilson, the 2020 WNBA MVP, added 14 points, six assists and five rebounds.

Las Vegas averaged a league-high 91.4 points prior to Tuesday’s game. It shot better from the floor than the Sun, 43.8 to 40 percent.

Connecticut pulled through thanks to an edge in rebounding (34-29), second-chance points (16-4) and points off turnovers (23 on 13 Aces’ turnovers).

“(It was the) same thing as the last time we played Connecticut,” Las Vegas head coach Bill Laimbeer said. “(We) played their basketball game — a halfcourt slugfest, and that’s not who we are and that’s who they are.”

The Sun also benefitted from free throw opportunities. They made 22 of 23, Las Vegas made 11 of 12.

Connecticut made 11 of 11 free throws in the fourth quarter alone while the Aces converted on its one attempt.

“Disappointing that (we were) on the short end of the stick on the free throw line,” Laimbeer said. “It’s just unacceptable. That really kind of hurt us badly by not getting the easy free throws that they seemed to be getting on bail-out calls.”

There was controversy during the team’s first meeting. Cambage took to Instagram after the game and said that Miller, while petitioning an official for a foul calls, said about her, “C’mon, she’s 300 pounds.”

Miller was fined $10,000 the next day and suspended one game.

Cambage directed comments of her own at Miller during her Instagram post.

“If there’s one thing about me is that I’ll never let a man disrespect me,” Cambage said. “Ever, ever, ever. Especially a little white one.”

Cambage later added, “you are so lucky it was during a game.”

Cambage approached Miller before the game and the two hugged.

“We just apologized to each other,” Miller said. “She summed it up best, right — ‘We’re in this together.’ We’re a league that really supports each other, fights for each other.’

“We all really care for each other. As much as we are competitive against each other and want to beat each other, there’s camaraderie with the players in this league. There’s a mutual respect (between) the coaches in this league. … There’s a lot of mutual respect between the two of us.”

The Sun led the majority of the game and were clinging to a 60-59 lead with 5 minutes, 13 seconds left when it pushed for one last run.

Brionna Jones was left open by the basket and laid in a DeWanna Bonner pass. Jonquel Jones was then fouled on back-to-back possessions by Aja Wilson and made all four free throws.

Brionna Jones squeezed by Cambage for a layup and Bonner followed with a layup to push Connecticut ahead, 70-61, with 3:01 remaining.

“I’m so ready for this off day,” Jonquel Jones said. “I don’t remember the last time I felt like this (fatigued). This was really tough and I’m proud of the team and proud of the coaches.”