Thorn scores 17 to help Sky hold off Lynx

CHICAGO(AP) Erin Thorn scored 17 points to help the short-handed Chicago Sky hold off a furious late Minnesota surge to beat the Lynx 79-76 on Saturday night.

Chicago (13-12) has won three of its last four games and moved into a virtual tie with Connecticut for fourth place in the Eastern Conference.

The Sky were down to nine healthy players as starting guard Brooke Wyckoff (unspecified illness) and reserve guard K.B. Sharp (sore right knee) sat out.

"We've all had to step up the last couple of games because we've been dropping like flies,'' said Thorn, who played a season-high 27 minutes and produced her second-highest production of the season. "But whatever they need, we've been ready.''

Roneeka Hodges scored 25 points to lead Minnesota (11-13), which has now lost three of its last four, but remained third in the West.

The Sky held a 70-58 lead with 3:21 left on Sylvia Fowles' three-point play. The Lynx responded hitting four 3-pointers in a 29-second span to close the deficit to 77-76 with 18 seconds left.

Jia Perkins sealed the victory with two free throws.

"It was kind of daunting,'' said Wiggins. "I was trying to get our team to realize that the game wasn't over. Hit some threes and we were right in the game. We had some opportunities to take it to overtime I'm proud of the comeback, but I'm very disappointed it got to that point.''

Candace Dupree and Fowles added 14 apiece for Chicago while Perkins had 11. Dupree also had a game-high 14 rebounds.

Candice Wiggins and Charde Houston added 14 and 12 points, respectively for Minnesota.

Chicago led by eight at the half, but Minnesota closed to 44-42 midway through the third quarter before Thorn took over. She hit three 3-pointers to push the lead back up to nine heading into the fourth.

"They went to a zone and my teammates found me with some open looks,'' Thorn said. "When I get those chances, I've got to knock them down.''

Calendar Strip here