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Sparks Maintain Hold on the Lynx

May 29, 2003|From Associated Press

Lisa Leslie scored 28 points as the Sparks beat the Minnesota Lynx for the 13th straight time, 83-80, Wednesday night at Minneapolis.

The Sparks (3-0) went 20 of 20 from the free-throw line, including eight in a row in the final four minutes. Nikki Teasley had 14 points -- four three-pointers -- for the Sparks, who haven't lost to the Lynx since their first meeting in 1999.

Katie Smith led the Lynx with 19 points and Svetlana Abrosimova added 18 but missed a rushed three-pointer at the buzzer.

The Lynx (1-1) closed to 77-76 on two free throws by Abrosimova with one minute left.

The Sparks' Mwadi Mabika missed a free throw on the other end, but Minnesota was called for a lane violation, and she then made both free throws to put Los Angeles back up by three at 79-76.

Abrosimova made a baseline jumper to cut the lead again to one, but Tamecka Dixon made the Sparks' 19th and 20th free throws before Abrosimova's missed three-pointer.

Leslie had 18 points and six rebounds in the first half as the Sparks opened a 51-46 lead.

Phoenix 51, San Antonio 50 -- Adrian Williams scored 14 points and grabbed a franchise-record 16 rebounds, and the Mercury overcame a scoreless drought of more than eight minutes in the second half to beat the Silver Stars at Phoenix.

Adrienne Goodson missed a three-pointer with two seconds left for the Silver Stars (1-1).

Marie Ferdinand scored 15 points after making seven of her first eight shots to lead San Antonio.

Both teams went scoreless in the final 1:43 after Tamicha Jackson made the second of two free throws to give Phoenix (1-2) a 51-50 lead.

The Mercury went 8:28 without scoring after Nevriye Yilmaz gave Phoenix a 31-24 lead 43 seconds into the second half.

San Antonio took advantage of the Mercury's 0-for-15 stretch -- 0 for 2 from the free-throw line -- by running off 16 straight points.

Phoenix followed that with a 15-8 run, including two baskets by Kayte Christensen and a three-pointer by Stacey Thomas to tie the score at 48-48 with 3:56 left.

Williams broke the Mercury record of 15 rebounds in a game set in 1999 by Marlies Askamp and Jennifer Gillom.

Williams had a double-double at halftime, scoring 10 points and grabbing 10 rebounds in 13 minutes to help Phoenix to a 29-24 lead at intermission.

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Free Way

The Sparks have built a perfect record on the road in part with near-perfect free-throw shooting:

*--* MAY 24 AT CONNECTICUT Free-throw shooting: 24 of 28 Outscored from the field: 66-58 Final score: Sparks 82, Sun 73 MAY 27 AT CLEVELAND Free-throw shooting: 14 of 16 Advantage from the field: 65-56 Final score: Sparks 79, Rockers 71 WEDNESDAY AT MINNESOTA Free-throw shooting: 20 of 20 Outscored from the field: 66-63 Final score: Sparks 83, Lynx 80

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