Tuesday’s Game 2 of the Russian Superleague Finals will be remembered for two things – Candace Parker and free throws. Also, perhaps, Candace Parker free throws. Parker scored 43 points and was 13-of-16 from the charity stripe (including a perfect 8-of-8 in the fourth quarter) as UMMC Ekaterinburg defeated Spartak Moscow Region 87-79 at home to take a commanding 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series.
Parker was unstoppable, making 13 shots in 21 attempts, including all four of her three-point attempts. Parker also grabbed nine rebounds and drew 11 fouls. Spartak was called for 26 as a team, with three starters (Sylvia Fowles, Irina Osipova and Diana Taurasi) fouling out. Fowles lasted just 14 minutes on the floor. Taurasi scored 14 points, but it was an off night, as she shot 5-of-18 from the field.
Sue Bird picked up the slack for Spartak on offense, scoring 20 points and shooting 8-of-14. Spartak held a two-point lead entering the fourth quarter, but Ekaterinburg never trailed again after starting the period with an 8-0 run.
Svetlana Abrosimova, with 13 points, was Ekaterinburg’s second-leading scorer.
Ekaterinburg will go for the sweep on Wednesday at home.