WNBA

Sparks-Mercury Preview

Share This Story

   
 

The Los Angeles Sparks are surging behind the recent solid play of Kristi Toliver, but it remains to be seen if they can sustain that run on the road.

Given Toliver's last performance in Phoenix, there's little reason to believe they can't.

Los Angeles seeks a fourth consecutive victory when it visits the struggling Mercury on Tuesday night.

The Sparks (13-6) have won three straight home games, beating defending champion Minnesota on Thursday, Seattle on Saturday and finishing the run with a 79-63 victory over Atlanta on Sunday.

Los Angeles had lost three straight - including two on the road - prior to its winning streak.

"I'm glad that's done,'' coach Carol Ross said. "I'm extremely proud of them. Everything's going to get knocked to the mat in this league, but it's how you get up, and I thought we responded to rest. I thought we responded to practice. I think we really focused in on these three home games against three quality opponents.''

Toliver has been a major reason for the surge, averaging 23.7 points after scoring only 9.7 per game in the previous three defeats. She played all 40 minutes Sunday despite it being the second game of a back-to-back.

Candace Parker added 14 points and 12 rebounds for the Sparks, who will play their last two games before the Olympic break away from home.

"We wanted to be greedy and get all these wins at home and take that momentum on the road,'' Toliver said.

Parker didn't play in the Sparks' last road win, but Toliver picked up the slack by scoring a career-high 29 points - matched Thursday against Minnesota - to help Los Angeles earn a 93-84 win over Phoenix on June 23.

The Sparks have won the season's first three meetings over the Mercury (4-13), who have dropped four straight after an 83-68 loss to Seattle on Sunday.

Diana Taurasi hasn't played since scoring 18 points in a 99-88 loss to Los Angeles on May 26, missing the last 14 games with a strained left hip flexor. Candice Dupree also didn't play Sunday's second end of a back-to-back because of a knee contusion.

Phoenix, which shot only 32.8 percent against the Storm, were led by DeWanna Bonner's 12 points.

"Every dog has its day, and it's not our day,'' coach Corey Gaines said. "We'll be back one day.''

Bonner scored 24 points and Samantha Prahalis added 22 in the Mercury's most recent defeat against the Sparks, but Prahalis was held to six while Bonner netted 18 in a 90-74 loss June 8.

Toliver has averaged 20.3 points in the three meetings, while Parker has averages of 25.0 points and 10.5 rebounds in the two matchups she's played.



Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


FOX SPORTS Videos

Why is LeSean McCoy practicing blindfolded? Posted: Aug 12, 2014
Donovan McNabb and Mike Garafolo talk Eagles RB 'Shady' McCoy.

Could Richie Incognito get another NFL job? Posted: Aug 12, 2014
Donovan McNabb and Mike Garafolo talk Richie Incognito.

Byron Scott: No Laker Can Beat Me In Horse - @TheBuzzeronFOX Posted: Aug 12, 2014
The Lakers new coach is still pretty confident in his shot. Kobe Bryant might ha...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Mitchell & Ness Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird Green Authentic Throwback Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Boston_Celtics/browse/featuredproduct/118804/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_118000/FF_118804_xl.jpg&w=100 249.95 Mitchell & Ness Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird Green Authentic Throwback Jersey
    adidas Los Angeles Lakers Purple Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/172442/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_172000/FF_172442_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Los Angeles Lakers Purple Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Miami Heat Black Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/173566/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_173000/FF_173566_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Miami Heat Black Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Chicago Bulls Red Primary Logo T-shirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Chicago_Bulls/browse/featuredproduct/173568/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_173000/FF_173568_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 adidas Chicago Bulls Red Primary Logo T-shirt
    adidas Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird White Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Boston_Celtics/browse/featuredproduct/177922/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177922_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Boston Celtics #33 Larry Bird White Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball..
    adidas Atlanta Hawks #21 Dominique Wilkins Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Atlanta_Hawks/browse/featuredproduct/177923/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177923_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Atlanta Hawks #21 Dominique Wilkins Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basket..
    adidas Los Angeles Lakers #32 Magic Johnson Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey - Gold http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/177924/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_177000/FF_177924_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Los Angeles Lakers #32 Magic Johnson Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketbal..
    adidas New York Knicks #19 Willis Reed Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/178326/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178326_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas New York Knicks #19 Willis Reed Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Bas..
    adidas Philadelphia 76ers #6 Julius Erving Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Philadelphia_76ers/browse/featuredproduct/178582/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178582_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Philadelphia 76ers #6 Julius Erving Royal Blue Hardwood Classics Swingman..
    adidas Houston Rockets #34 Hakeem Olajuwon Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basketball Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Houston_Rockets/browse/featuredproduct/178773/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_178000/FF_178773_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas Houston Rockets #34 Hakeem Olajuwon Red Hardwood Classics Swingman Basket..