Practice Report: Friday, June 29
Social Media Associate
Following Wednesday's win over Phoenix, the Lynx have a tough week ahead of them. Facing Western Conference foes San Antonio and Los Angeles on the road Sunday and Thursday and coming home to play Eastern Conference-leading Connecticut the following Saturday, the Lynx hit the court for some practice time at the LifeTime Fitness Training Center today to focus on their upcoming opponents.
"You've got a situation where you're ... 13-1, and people want to beat you," coach Cheryl Reeve said after Wednesday's win. "And we're now going to their home courts."
San Antonio started the season slow but has won four of its last five games since playing Minnesota June 3. Reeve pointed to that game against San Antonio as a recognition game for the Silver Stars that's helped them improve their game.
"That first half of our game, they weren't happy with their pace on either side of the ball," Reeve said. "And so they picked it up in the second half and competed, and I think they saw the results of that. And since that game, I think they have been playing extremely, extremely well."
Although it's expected to be a tough matchup, for Lynx center Taj McWilliams-Franklin, a San Antonio native, Sunday's game will also be a homecoming.
"I'm happy to be home, I like being home," McWilliams-Franklin said. "My mom comes down and acts crazy at the games, and I get to just drive down the highway to my house and to the game, so it's going to be fun for me."
All three of this week's opponents -- San Antonio, Los Angeles and Connecticut -- have been mimicking the Lynx as of late, spreading out their scoring in recent games, with several players scoring in double digits and making it difficult for opposing teams to defend them. The Lynx have been focused on improving the holes in their defensive game all season and have placed a definite emphasis on defense and rebounding recently.
"We haven't been playing defensively the way we know we can," said Seimone Augustus. "The swarming defense that we talked about all last year and what was kind of like our bread and butter and the reason we won the championship. We kind of feel like we've got a few little kinks here and there that we can fix, but for the most part, I think we've done pretty well."
McWilliams-Franklin added that aggressive rebounding and tough play on the defensive end often leads to great offensive games for the Lynx.
"For us, the key is going to be being consistent and ... not relying so much on our offense to get us going, but getting the stops we need to make on defense to propel our offense and our fastbreak."
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