Game 1: Lynx Fall To Fever, 76-70







Andrea Allis
Web Editorial Associate

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For the first time this postseason, the Indiana Fever recorded a Game 1 win as they defeated the defending champion Minnesota Lynx 76-70 at Target Center for the opening game of the WNBA Finals.

Playing without Katie Douglas (ankle) didn’t appear to slow Indiana down any, as four of their starters scored in double figures, including Erin Phillips (13 points), who started in Douglas’ place. Tamika Catchings led the Fever with 20 points but shot only 30 percent (6-of-20), while Erlana Larkins had 16 points and a game-high 15 rebounds.

Box Score LYNX BOXSCORE
Lynx vs. Fever
The Lynx had a hard time defensively early in the game, getting down 14-7 in the first four minutes and struggling to cover the perimeter. On the offensive end, Minnesota shot 51 percent in the first half but finished the game at only 39 percent shooting. They had an 8-0 run over a three and a half minute span in the third quarter, but they scored only 12 points in the fourth, when they went nearly eight minutes without scoring a field goal.

"The shots weren’t falling, but I think it boiled down to our defense," Rebekkah Brunson said. "I think we’re always going to be able to score. We can score with our defense if we get some stops. I think they just got out there and they scored and they got to loose balls and they played harder than us tonight."

Seimone Augustus recorded a game-high 23 points and Maya Moore added 14 points and 10 rebounds, though she went just 4-of-14 from the floor. Rebekkah Brunson had 10 points and 10 rebounds, and Lindsay Whalen had 12 points and four assists.

"We came in knowing Indiana's defense was going to be a tough, stifling defense," Augustus said. "And I feel like the shots that we got were shots that we normally take and make. There was a stretch of offense [in the fourth quarter] where we weren't as effective as we wanted to be, and we have to give credit where credit is due; they did an awesome job of just getting in every cut and making every shot difficult."

Leader of the Pack: Seimone Augustus

Last year’s Finals MVP Seimone Augustus reminded Target Center why the Lynx want the ball in her hands in high-pressure situations. Augustus had 13 points in the first half to keep the Lynx in the game, and she didn’t slow down after halftime, providing nine third-quarter points to fuel their run during that stretch. She finished the night with 23 points on 53 percent shooting and six rebounds.

Highlight of the Game

After trailing for much of the game, Seimone Augustus hit a 3-pointer with six minutes remaining in the third quarter to tie the score at 50. This play directly followed a missed shot by Augustus, which was rebounded by Rebekkah Brunson. Off her miss, Maya Moore grabbed the rebound one-handed for the tip in and got Target Center on its feet.

The Numbers Game

Minnesota had a 38-30 rebounding advantage over Indiana but couldn't seem to convert them into scoring opportunities, as the Lynx trailed in both second-chance points (19-18) and points in the paint (38-24). ... The Lynx were outscored 20-12 in the fourth quarter with over half of those 12 points coming from free throws. ... Erlana Larkins grabbed 10 of her 15 rebounds in the second half.

Quotable

"It was physical. That's the way Indiana plays. They defend, and it's physical, and it's not a surprise to us. It's not a surprise to anybody that plays against Indiana. So yeah, we expect that it'll be five games, hard, physical, nothing easy. And I imagine it'll be that way for both teams." -- Coach Cheryl Reeve

Looking Ahead

The Lynx remain at Target Center for Game 2 of the WNBA finals best-of-five series on Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 7 p.m. They’ll then head to Indiana for Game 3 on Friday, Oct. 19. Wednesday's game will be broadcast on ESPN, and Friday's on ESPN2.


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