Minnesota defeated Connecticut last night by a score of 91-77. Rebekkah Brunson led the way for the Lynx with a double-double: 26 points and 11 rebounds. Lindsay Whalen added 18 points and Maya Moore chipped in with 17. Connecticut was led by Tina Charles who also recorded a double-double with 22 points and 12 rebounds.
The Sun scored first, but could not get the lead back after that. Minnesota just kept bringing the heat, leading by as much as 19. Brunson told reporters that this game was the first one in a while that the Lynx had given their full effort.
"Connecticut definitely got our best effort, which we haven't been putting forth lately. We knew we had to change our mentality with the way we've been playing."
Connecticut head coach Anne Donovan accredited their defense for the loss.
"Give Minnesota a lot of credit," she said. "Defensively, we never seemed to bother them. It didn't matter what lineup we had in there. They shot high 50s, 60s (percent) all night long.''
With the win, Minnesota puts itself a full game ahead of Los Angeles for the top spot in the Western Conference. And with another game on their schedule before Los Angeles plays again, they can add more of a cushion and put the pressure on the Sparks.
Connecticut is still in last place in the East. They would need nothing short of a miracle to make the playoffs.
Connecticut is the most injury ridden team in the WNBA this season. Only the Indiana Fever knows how the Sun feel. Both Allison Hightower and Kelly Faris, as well as veteran guard Kara Lawson, were inactive for the Sun in last night's loss. The loss of these players had a definite impact. Both Hightower and Faris have been coming into their own lately and were contributing greatly for the team. Without the scoring ability of Hightower and Faris' scrappy play, the Sun were in a bad position.
Unfortunately the pair will be out for the season. Lawson, who made a strong case for Most Improved Player last year, is also out. She has had a knee injury bothering her for the whole of the season. She's day to day and will hopefully be able to play a few games before the season is over.