10:00 PM ET, June 20, 2008
Connecticut: A. Jones 14 Pts, 5 Reb, 5 Ast, 1 Stl, 4 Blk
Sacramento: R. Brunson 19 Pts, 10 Reb, 1 Stl, 2 Blk
Despite splitting the first four games of their road trip, the Connecticut Sun have been able to remain atop the Eastern Conference standings.The Sun will look to stay in first on Friday night when they wrap up the swing against the Sacramento Monarchs, who will try to avoid their third straight loss at Arco Arena.Connecticut (9-3) has the most wins in the league, and leads Detroit by one-half game in the East. The Sun and Shock will meet in a home-and-home series starting Tuesday in Connecticut.First, the Sun take the court for their third game in five nights, and must bounce back from their second-worst loss of the year -- 102-81 to defending WNBA champion Phoenix on Wednesday.Asjha Jones had 18 points to lead the Sun, who missed 19 of 26 shots in the second half after trailing 53-51 at the break."Every time we got close, they got to the free throw line and finished us off in the fourth (quarter)," Connecticut coach Mike Thibault said.The Sun's defense has been wildly inconsistent during the road trip. In wins over Minnesota and Seattle, Connecticut allowed 66.5 points, but in losses to Los Angeles and the Mercury, that figure rises to 100.0.The Monarchs (5-5) are 10th in the league in scoring, averaging 71.6 points.Sacramento saw its three-game winning streak snapped Saturday following a 74-66 home loss to the Sparks. Rebekkah Brunson scored 16 points and had eight rebounds, but the Monarchs shot just 6-of-33 in the second half, missing all 15 shots they took in the third quarter."We had some players who were asking to come out of the game, they were tired," said Sacramento coach Jenny Boucek, whose team shot 32.3 percent. "Some nights you're not going to have enough gas in the tank when you're playing a great team like the Sparks."Brunson is second on the Monarchs with 11.1 points and is their leading rebounder (6.8 per game). Nicole Powell leads Sacramento with an average of 14.3 points.The Sun used 14 3-pointers to beat the Monarchs 87-64 on May 24 in Connecticut. Brunson paced Sacramento with 19 points and seven rebounds.