Postgame Notes: July 28, 2004

Lynx 66, Silver Stars 53
Target Center

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Minnesota notched its sixth straight home victory with tonight's 13-point decision, the second-longest Target Center string in club history; the Lynx ran off seven in a row last summer (July 8-Aug. 4, 2003). The current run began with a 58-50 OT triumph vs. Houston on June 30; Minnesota's last home loss was an 83-67 setback vs. L.A. three nights earlier. The Lynx improve to 10-3 this year at Target Center, tying L.A. (10-1) and Seattle (10-2) for the WNBA's most home wins in 2004. The franchise single-season record for home victories is 11, set last summer.

The Lynx have won seven of their last eight overall, with last Friday's 65-61 loss at Washington halting a franchise-record six-game winning streak. They're now 8-2 in July, tying the club mark for victories in a calendar month (8-5 in June 2000). Minnesota improves to 14-10 overall, closing within 1.5 games of second-place Seattle (15-8) in the Western Conference playoff race; the Storm will visit Target Center on Friday night.

San Antonio completed a winless four-game road trip with tonight's defeat, dropping to 6-18 on the year. The Silver Stars will return to the SBC Center this weekend, hosting Phoenix on Friday and Los Angeles on Saturday. They've dropped nine of their last 10 overall, and 17 of 20 since getting off to a 3-1 start. San Antonio is in the throes of a seven-game road losing streak, dating to an 80-72 OT win at Phoenix on June 26. That's the WNBA's longest road slide this summer; Houston and Indiana are both currently riding six-game skids.

Tonight's victory enables Minnesota to gain a split of its four-game season series vs. the Silver Stars, with the home team winning all four. In the clubs' previous meeting (Jan. 24 at the SBC Center), San Antonio stopped a club-record eight-game losing streak by handing the Lynx a 70-57 defeat. Minnesota has now beaten the Silver Stars five straight times at Target Center, and increases its lead in the all-time series to 12-9 (4-0 in 2003).

The Lynx shot 48.0% (24-for-50), their third-highest percentage of the season and best since hitting a season-high 50.0% vs. Phoenix on June 5. Entering the contest, Minnesota had been held below 40% in each of its three previous outings, hitting a combined 37.6% in that stretch. Meanwhile, the Lynx finished at a season-low 55.6% (15-for-27) from the free-throw line. In four games vs. San Antonio this year, Minnesota shot just 58.0% (40-for-69) from the stripe; they're hitting at a 75.3% clip in all other contests.

San Antonio's 44.2% effort from the floor is their best since shooting 45.3% at Los Angeles on July 2 (an 87-80 OT loss). The Silver Stars have now been outshot in six consecutive games, and slip to 1-16 when hitting a lower percentage. San Antonio finished 5-for-6 from the free-throw line, setting season lows in both categories. The six attempts is the second-lowest total in franchise history; they went to the line just four times at Houston last June 28.

Minnesota racked up a 29-23 rebounding advantage; they've been outboarded only once in their last eight outings (going 7-1) and improve to 11-2 with the board edge. San Antonio came up short in all four games of its just-completed road trip, facing an average deficit of -13.0 rpg (22.5-35.5). The Silver Stars' four offensive rebounds tonight equal a single-game low for 2004; San Antonio falls to 0-11 when being outrebounded.

The Lynx tied a franchise record by swiping 15 steals; they previously came up with 15 vs. Cleveland on Aug. 16, 1999. Minnesota pilfered 13 steals in the 1st half alone tonight, matching the second-highest total for one half in WNBA history (New York had 14 at Phoenix on July 7, 1997). Helen Darling swiped a career-high five steals, the most by any Lynx player in 2004; the club record of six is shared by Teresa Edwards, Tamika Williams, Lynn Pride and Sonja Tate. All five of Darling's steals came before intermission, setting a franchise record for one half.

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