Roman Augustoviz spends Minnesota's winters covering college hockey, specifically the Gophers, and other University of Minnesota sports. During the summer, he writes about the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx, with a dose of U sports sprinkled in. Follow him on Twitter @RomanStrib.

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Lynx show flaws -- and overcome them

Posted by: Roman Augustoviz under Lynx Updated: May 25, 2012 - 10:17 AM

A longtime Lynx fans walked by press row at the end of the game and said, "I thought they were going to lose that game."

He wasn't the only one who thought that on Thursday night after the Lynx's hard-fought 92-84 victory over the Los Angeles Sparks.

The Lynx won the first and fourth quarters decisively, but were outplayed in the second and for much of the third. They trailed by nine points in the middle of the third quarter.

"Maya, we've got 10 turnovers," screamed Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve after a bad pass by Moore just 4-1/2 minutes into the second quarter.

The Lynx finished with 19 turnovers -- five by Moore -- which led to 19 L.A. points.

After getting a career-high seven assists in her previous game, Moore seemed to try to do too much. She had only two assists this game and 11 points, seven in the first quarter. Her mother often comes to game, but her grandparents were there, too. Maybe she pressed a little.

But the strength of the Lynx is all the talented players they have. If one has an off game, another can compensate.

On Thursday, Seimone Augustus and Rebekkah Brunson were at their best. Augustus scored 25 points and was 11 of 17 from the field. Brunson had 17 points and had seven rebounds and three assists. Only weak spot with her was the free throw line, where she went seven for 12.

Brunson also was on L.A.'s Candace Parker for much of the second half. Parker had 17 points in the first half, six in the second.

"We didn't play our best," Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve said. "Everybody just kind of stepped up and made a contribution when they needed to.

"Anytime you have that, that's a really good sign. Whether it's Seimone [Augustus] doing her usual thing or [Candice] Wiggins in the corner making a three or Taj [McWilliams-Franklin] playing great defense on Candace [Parker], everybody just kind of took their turn. Becky [Brunson] going to the basket harder."

The Lynx shot 53.1 percent -- the third time in three games they have shot better than 50 percent. But L.A. also was over 50 percent most of the game and finished just under, 49.2 percent.

"We know we can play a lot better," Reeve said. "We know things can go a lot smoother offensively and we have to stay more connected on defense. Overall, it feels like a good win right now."

A CONSISTENT LEADER

Augustus has led the Lynx in scoring every game. She had 19 in her first game, 22 in her second and 25 in her third. She is averaging 22 points per game.

"[The Sparks] made tough shots," Augustus said. "We had to come back and make tough shots or make plays and we did. Defensively, I think we made a step [Thursday]. Just locking in. We had to make big stops in order to win this game and we were able to come up with some."

The Lynx forced L.A. into six turnovers in the fourth quarter when they outscored the Sparks 26-14. Two of the turnovers came on steals by Augustus.

 

 

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