Archive for Sunday, July 27, 2003

Sales powers Sun to win over Sting

Connecticut moves within a half-game of second-place Charlotte in East

July 27, 2003

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— Nykesha Sales scored 18 of her 23 points in the second half to lead the Connecticut Sun to a 74-70 victory over the Charlotte Sting Saturday night.

Katie Douglas scored nine of her 11 points in the second half as the Sun (13-11) extended their winning streak to a season-high four games.

Taj McWilliams-Franklin added 10 points and seven rebounds.

Sales shot 7-for-9 in the second half and 9-for-13 overall, but her most inspired play came after she was called for four fouls in the second half.

"I just got some shots within the flow of the game," Sales said. "I got a little emotional, and then things started to go my way."

Tammy Sutton-Brown led the Sting (13-11) with a season-high 21 points and seven rebounds in Charlotte's fourth loss in five games. It beat the Sun 69-55 in the teams' previous meeting June 28.

With 10 games remaining -- all against the Eastern Conference -- the Sun moved within a half-game of the second-place Sting.

"It's definitely important to win, period," Sun guard Katie Douglas said. "But (considering) that Charlotte is standing there in second, and we're fighting for a playoff position right now, all these wins are going to help us."

The Sun played at the Hartford Civic Center, the only home game they'll play away from Mohegan Sun Arena this season.

The Sun shot 53.1 percent (26-for-49) as a team. Connecticut is shooting 49.6 percent in the last four games, compared to 36 percent in the previous five, resulting in three losses.

Rockers 89, Mystics 78

Cleveland -- Penny Taylor scored a season-high 22 points, and Betty Lennox added 21, helping Cleveland build a 24-point halftime lead.

The Rockers (11-11) set a franchise record with 55 points in the first half and had a season-high final point total.

Taylor was 8-of-11 from the field and had a team-leading nine rebounds and five assists. Lennox was 9-of-14 on field goals. Taylor scored 17 points in the first half, when Cleveland hit 63 percent of its shots.

Chamique Holdsclaw led the Mystics (5-17) with 16 points and six rebounds.

Comets 61, Liberty 53

Houston -- Tina Thompson scored 20 points, and Janeth Arcain added 14 as Houston won its third straight with a victory over New York.

The Liberty rallied in the second half, going on a 13-2 run to tie it at 39 with 9:46 remaining. But Houston (12-8) regrouped and went on a 10-3 run to take a 49-42 lead with 3:43 to go. New York (9-11) never threatened again.

Vickie Johnson scored 14 points and Tari Phillips had 16 rebounds to lead New York, which has lost three straight away from home.

Lynx 70, Fever 65

Indianapolis -- Katie Smith scored 21 points, and Sheri Sam added a season-high 20 to lead Minnesota past Indiana.

The Lynx's physical defense held the Fever to two field goals during the final nine minutes. Indiana hit just 31.8 percent (21-of-66) from the field and made just 3-of-22 three-point field goals. Minnesota shot 25-of-52 (48 percent) from the field.

Tamika Catchings led the Fever with 20 points and nine rebounds, and surpassed the 1,000-point mark with a driving layup with 8:09 remaining in the first half. But she made just two field goals after that -- none in the second half.

Catchings, who turned 24 on July 21, is the second-fastest and fifth-youngest player in WNBA history to reach the mark. She reached 1,000 in her 54th game. Cynthia Cooper of Houston needed just 45 games to reach that figure.

Monarchs 76, Storm 63

Sacramento, Calif. -- DeMya Walker tied a career high with 21 points, leading Sacramento.

Walker shot 9-of-15 from the field and helped the Monarchs to a quick start in winning their second straight and fifth in six games since interim coach John Whisenant replaced the fired Maura McHugh.

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