Dupree Scores 26 as Sky Beat Lynx

Chicago 73, Minnesota 71 (F)

MINNEAPOLIS, July 1 (AP) -- The Chicago Sky are beginning to adjust to life without 6-foot-6 rookie center Sylvia Fowles.

Candice Dupree had 26 points and 10 rebounds to lead Chicago past the Minnesota Lynx, 73-71 on Tuesday night.

Jia Perkins had 20 points and made a crucial late 3-pointer for the Sky, who have won consecutive games after a five-game losing streak. Chasity Melvin, starting in place of the injured Fowles, added 11 points and 11 rebounds.

Fowles, the second overall pick in the 2008 draft, hasn't played since spraining a knee June 3.

"It takes a little bit of time to make an adjustment because Sylvia is such a presence there,'' Chicago coach Steve Key said. "Although we only had her five games, they had to make the adjustment and so did we. But the biggest thing is, about a week-and-a-half ago, I told them there are no new plays, nothing coming from me. They have to take ownership of it.

"I think they are starting to realize it's them, not me.''

Rookie Candice Wiggins had 17 points to lead Minnesota. Reserves Vanessa Hayden-Johnson and Charde Houston each scored 13 points off the bench for the Lynx (8-8), who have lost two straight and seven of nine.

All-Star Seimone Augustus, returning to the lineup after missing Saturday's game with a toe injury, scored 10 for the Lynx but shot 4-for-13, including a missed tying shot for Minnesota as time expired.

With the teams tied at 67-67, Perkins made a wide-open 3-pointer with 1:35 remaining. Wiggins hit a driving lay-up, but Dupree finished the scoring with a driving lay-up that she was able to spin off the backboard from a tough angle.

"I have no idea how it went in,'' Dupree said. "I think it went in off the tip of my middle finger. I didn't think it was going to go in, but it did. It was a big shot and we were able to get some good stops and get them to the free-throw line and force them to hit free throws.''

With Fowles missing and Lynx starting center Nicky Anosike in early foul trouble, Hayden-Johnson scored 12 points in the first half as Minnesota took a 46-43 halftime advantage. Wiggins knocked down a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

The Sky overcame 16 turnovers as the Lynx shot just 39 percent from the field, including an 8-for-29 mark in the second half.

"We came out to start the third and I know Seimone missed a wide-open 12-footer,'' Lynx coach Don Zierden said. "We also missed at least two layups. You can't afford to miss layups in the WNBA. We found that out tonight.''

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