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20080719/MINSAN
Lynx-Silver Stars Preview
By ANTHONY GIORNALISTA, STATS Senior Writer

Sophia Young and the San Antonio Silver Stars are enjoying their best offensive stretch of the season. A matchup with the Minnesota Lynx isn't likely to stop their momentum.

Coming off their highest-scoring game of the season, Young and the Silver Stars look to take advantage of the struggling Lynx on Saturday night.

Led by Young, Western Conference-leading San Antonio (16-7) is averaging 74.9 points per game. But the Silver Stars have been even better recently, scoring 78.0 points a contest en route to winning eight of their last nine games.

Young has scored 20 points or more in seven of those contests, and is averaging 18.5 this season. The third-year forward had 26 points - one shy of matching her season high - in San Antonio's 97-87 win over Phoenix on Tuesday night.

Thanks partly to crisp passing, the Silver Stars topped the 90-point mark for the first time this season.

"Twenty-five assists on 33 field goals says that we were moving the ball well," said San Antonio guard Becky Hammon, averaging 22.0 points in her last three games. "When we get everybody going, it's very difficult for our opponents to guard us."

Young had 20 points and five steals, while Hammon added 11 points and seven assists in the Silver Stars' 73-65 win over the Lynx (10-11) on June 28.

Minnesota ranks 12th in the league in scoring defense, giving up 78.6 points per game. The Lynx have lost three of their last four, allowing 96 points in two of those contests.

Minnesota had one of its best offensive games of the season against Houston on Thursday, but lost 96-88.

The Lynx wasted a 27-point effort from Candice Wiggins, who is second on the team with 16.9 points per game despite coming off the bench. Her only start of the season was against San Antonio in June, finishing with 15 points and six steals before fouling out.

Seimone Augustus, who tops Minnesota with 19.2 points a contest, had 17 versus the Comets. She missed the last game against San Antonio due to a sprained right big toe. The third-year forward missed a game for the first time after 82 consecutive starts.

Augustus had 18 points in the Lynx's first contest against the Silver Stars this season, leading Minnesota to a 90-78 win on June 8.

The Lynx expect to have coach Don Zierden back on the sideline after missing Thursday's game due to illness. Assistant Julie Plank took over in his absence.

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