Cappie Pondexter missed a game-winning tip-in at the fourth-quarter buzzer then scored seven of her 23 points in overtime to help the Phoenix Mercury escape with a 120-116 victory over the Indiana Fever in a dramatic opener of the WNBA finals.
|Cappie Pondexter lays up her shot for Phoenix [GALLO/GETTY]
The Phoenix point guard, frustrated and in foul trouble in the first half, scored the final five points in the highest-scoring game in WNBA history.
Penny Taylor added 23 points and newly crowned league MVP Diana Taurasi had 22 for the Mercury, in search of their second title in three years.
Game 2 is Thursday night in Phoenix.
Katie Douglas tied it with a 3-pointer for Indiana with 7.1 seconds left in regulation, then scored eight in overtime for a career playoff high 30 points.
Ebony Hoffman had a career-high 27 on 12 of 14 shooting as the Fever set a franchise scoring record in just the second 100-point game in the club's history.
Before this one, the league's highest-scoring game was Phoenix's 111-110 victory over Houston in triple overtime in a regular-season contest on August 10, 2006.
The Mercury and Fever each scored more points than any team previously in league history. The old mark was 115, of course by Phoenix, in an overtime victory over Sacramento on June 13.
Indiana's Tamika Catchings had just eight points before fouling out with 2:42 left in overtime but harassed Taurasi into a 5-of-17 shooting night.
Finals schedule: (Best-of-5)
Tuesday September 29: Phoenix 120, Indiana 116, Phoenix leads series 1-0
Thursday October 1: Indiana at Phoenix
Sunday October 4: Phoenix at Indiana
Wednesday October 7, Phoenix at Indiana
Friday October 9, Indiana at Phoenix