Friday's WNBA Capsules
Saturday, September 10, 2011
SEATTLE (AP) — Katie Smith scored 11 of her season-high 26 points in the third quarter to help Seattle beat Phoenix 85-70 on Friday night and clinch home-court advantage against the Mercury in the playoffs next week.
Tanisha Wright added 18 points and Sue Bird had 15 for Seattle (20-13), which has the tiebreaker against Phoenix (19-14) for the No. 2 playoff seed in the Western Conference with one game remaining. The Storm won the season series 3-1.
Diana Taurasi scored a season-high 36 points for Phoenix. She had 28 in the first half, three shy of the WNBA record, to help the Mercury to a 41-35 lead. But after tying a league record with six 3-pointers in the first half, she did not make one in the second.
Phoenix opens the best-of-three series Thursday at Seattle, which has won seven of eight.
Sparks 84, Shock 73
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Jantel Lavender had 19 points and a season-high 12 rebounds for Los Angeles.
The Sparks (14-19) snapped a two-game losing streak and won for only the second time in six games despite missing leading scorer and rebounder Candace Parker, who sat out for precautionary reasons after her right knee flared up.
Ticha Penicheiro scored 13 points and Kristi Toliver added 12 for the Sparks.
Andrea Riley and Liz Cambage each scored 18 points for the Shock (3-30), who lost their fifth straight game.
Liberty 83, Fever 75
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Essense Carson scored 18 points and Kia Vaughn had 15 points and nine rebounds for New York against first-place Indiana.
Nicole Powell added 13 points, and Plenette Pierson and Cappie Pondexter had 12 apiece to help the Liberty (19-14) pull into a tie with Atlanta for third place in the Eastern Conference with one game remaining. New York visits second-place Connecticut on Sunday, while the Dream visit Indiana.
Katie Douglas scored 17 points and Shannon Bobbitt had a career-high 16 for the Fever (21-12), who had already secured the No. 1 seed in the East.
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