Silver Stars-Lynx Preview
The Minnesota Lynx have dominated the San Antonio Silver Stars in recent home matchups and will get to face a short-handed team in the next one.
The Lynx will try to bounce back from their first loss of the season Tuesday night by earning another win over the Silver Stars at the Target Center.
Minnesota (2-1) has won seven straight home games over San Antonio, including two in the 2011 playoffs, and those teams featured stars Becky Hammon and Sophia Young. Hammon is not expected to return until mid-June after breaking her right middle finger in practice May 18, and Young is out for the season after tearing a knee ligament while playing in China.
"I think we're coming along well," guard Jia Perkins said. "We've been playing good basketball, team basketball, so we don't have any excuses right now. We're good with what we've got."
The Silver Stars (2-2) won back-to-back home games without those two players but were edged in their first one on the road Sunday, 72-70 by Chicago. Sky star rookie Elena Delle Donne hit a pair of free throws with 1.8 seconds left and Perkins missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer.
Perkins, who had a season-high 20 points, had tied the game on a shot beyond the arc with 4.3 seconds to go.
"My only thing was I wish we could have played more basketball because I felt like we were headed in the right direction," said coach Dan Hughes, whose team trailed by 15 points late in the second quarter.
Hughes' club will try to bounce back by ending its lengthy skid in Minnesota but will face a team hungry to rebound from an 85-80 defeat in Washington on Saturday.
The Lynx shot a season-low 38.5 percent and was 13 of 21 (61.9 percent) from the free-throw line. Maya Moore had a team-best 22 points while Seimone Augustus and Rebekkah Brunson had 21 apiece, but Moore and Augustus also missed a combined 29 of 44 shots.
"Our Olympians didn't play like Olympians today," coach Cheryl Reeve said. "We hung in there. We tied the game, had a chance, but just didn't finish the game the way that you have to when you're on the road."
The Lynx edged the Silver Stars 3-2 in last season's series but the absence of Young could make a difference this season. She averaged a team-leading 18.8 points on 55.6 percent shooting and 7.8 rebounds against Minnesota in 2012.
Brunson, meanwhile, averaged a team-best 15.5 points and 12.5 rebounds versus the Silver Stars.
San Antonio's most recent win in Minnesota was on July 22, 2010.