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WNBA: Lynx overcome Sparks for fourth straight win

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Sylvia Fowles posted 15 points and 17 rebounds in her return from a shoulder injury, Kayla McBride hit three 3-pointers en route to 17 points, and the Minnesota Lynx overcame a sluggish scoring night to win their fourth straight Thursday with a 66-57 decision against the Los Angeles Sparks in Minneapolis.

Minnesota (17-9) shot just 20 of 58 and failed to score more than 18 points in any quarter. But a tenacious defensive effort in the second half, holding Los Angeles to just four points in the fourth quarter and 16 for the half, helped the Lynx rally from a deficit as high as eight points.

Fowles, who went for 29 points and 20 rebounds in an Aug. 24 win over Seattle, showed no lingering effect from the shoulder injury that sidelined her on Tuesday.

She capitalized on a Sparks frontcourt without Chiney Ogwumike, who was out with a knee injury. Minnesota dominated the glass to the tune of a 43-29 rebounding advantage. Napheesa Collier scored just five points, but contributed to the margin on the boards with eight rebounds.

Aerial Powers went 6 of 6 from the free throw line and added 13 points off the bench for the Lynx.

After 41 first-half points, Los Angeles (10-18) struggled to score on the interior. The Sparks shot a dismal 19 of 61, with six field goals coming from 3-point range. Erica Wheeler made two from long range en route to matching Nneka Ogwumike with a team-high 16 points.

Thursday’s loss ended a forgettable six-game road trip for the Sparks, who lost their fifth straight.

Los Angeles heads home a game out for the last playoff spot in the WNBA, but behind two teams: New York and Washington.

Minnesota clinched a playoff berth before Thursday’s game, and the win moved them ahead of Seattle into third place.

–Field Level Media

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