By Andrew Medeiros

July 3, 2008: Scoreboard | Video Play of the Day | Today in the WNBA Archive

Ivory Latta drives past Shannon Johnson of the Houston Comets, but the Dream found themselves on the losing end again on Thursday, 72-65.
Scott Cunningham/NBAE/Getty Images
Silver Stars Swoop into First Place

Young converts last-second three-point play: A week ago the Silver Stars were two and a half games out of first place, but with a three-game winning streak and a similar losing skid by the Los Angeles Sparks, San Antonio took a slight half-game advantage on Thursday with a 68-67 win over the Sacramento Monarchs. Sophia Young led a balanced attack with 20 points and 12 rebounds, including converting a three-point play with 5.5 seconds remaining to put the Silver Stars on top. The Sparks had a chance to hold onto what remained of their lead when they faced off with the Minnesota Lynx later in the night. Lisa Leslie led the Sparks with a season-high 26 points to go along with 10 rebounds as the teams battled back and forth for three quarters before the Lynx scored 15 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to secure an 88-70 road win – the team’s first in Los Angeles since 2004.

Wiggins wins battle of the rookies: Candace Parker maintains an edge in the Rookie Rankings and is still among the leaders in points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks, but Candice Wiggins is tops among all rookies in scoring. The No. 1 and No. 3 picks in this year’s draft matched up for the first time of the season on Thursday with Wiggins and the Minnesota Lynx taking the upper hand. Wiggins led the pairing with 19 points, second on the Lynx to Seimone Augustus’ 26 points. While Parker scored a disappointing 12 points, she had more rebounds (6) and assists (3), but also fouled out in the fourth quarter as Minnesota began to pull away for an 18-point win.
"I didn't want to call a timeout because I needed to trust my team as well as they needed to trust themselves. They needed to see that they could stop a comeback, and they did."
-- Houston coach Karleen Thompson after the Comets' thwarted a late comeback from the Atlanta Dream to secure a road win.

Lauren Jackson, Storm
33 pts, 12-20 FG, 7-8 FT
84-71 win vs. Liberty

Sue Bird, Storm
23 pts, 10-13 FG, 3-3 FT
84-71 win vs. Liberty

Sophia Young, Silver Stars
20 pts, 6-11 FG, 8-11 FT
68-67 win vs. Monarchs

Nicole Powell, Monarchs
3-17 FG, 1-5 3-pt FG, 9 pts
68-67 loss at Silver Stars

Matee Ajavon, Comets
2-8 FG, 2-7 3-pt FG, 7 pts
72-65 win at Dream

Sequoia Holmes, Comets
0-7 FG, 0-2 3-pt FG, 4 pts
72-65 win at Dream

Saturday's Games ...

  • Monarchs at Comets, 3 p.m. ET
  • Sun at Fever, 7 p.m. ET (NBA TV)
  • Sky at Dream, 7:30 p.m. ET
  • Liberty at Mercury, 10 p.m. ET
  • Lynx at Storm, 10 p.m. ET
  • Douglas

    Essence Carson is still struggling to find a consistent stroke in the pros for the hometown New York Liberty. The Rutgers product seemed to break out a week ago against the Fever, scoring 18 points and grabbing seven rebounds in overtime, but followed that with consecutive four-point performances. Carson had another big game on Thursday, scoring 16 points on 7-of-14 shooting against the Seattle Storm, but the Liberty came up short, 84-71.
    Sancho Lyttle stepped into the starting lineup for injured forward Tina Thompson on Thursday and the Comets barely missed the Olympian. Lyttle played above the rim all night, grabbing 18 rebounds to go along with 15 points and two blocks. "I am learning more and more every day, and when she comes back, the coaches will have a great 1-2 punch,” the fourth-year center said. Lyttle has averaged 15 points and nine rebounds since Thompson went down with a broken finger.