Sun 68

(13-13, 6-7 away)

Mystics 69

(11-14, 7-5 home)

    7:00 PM ET, July 30, 2004

    Verizon Center, Washington, DC

    1 2 3 4 T
    CONN 34 34 68
    WSH 41 28 69

    Top Performers

    Connecticut: N. Sales 23 Pts, 5 Reb, 8 Ast, 3 Stl

    Washington: N. Sanford 13 Pts, 10 Reb, 1 Ast, 1 Blk

    Beard's 14 points helps offset Sales' effort

    WASHINGTON (AP) -- Without Chamique Holdsclaw, the Washington Mystics used balanced scoring for a 69-68 victory over the Connecticut Sun Friday night.

    Rookie Alana Beard had 14 points for the Mystics, and Murriel Page and Nakia Sanford each scored a season-high 13 points.

    "That's how we play in practice, we have people who can score," said Beard, who entered the game averaging 20.5 points in her last six outings. "I don't even want to talk about Chamique right now, but as a team I thought we played awesome tonight. It's not just me, it's everyone."

    Holdsclaw, the WNBA's second leading scorer with 19.0 points, has missed two of the last three games because of an undisclosed medical condition.

    Nykesha Sales led the Sun (13-13) with 23 points, a career-high eight assists and five rebounds. Lindsay Whalen had 11 points and seven rebounds. Katie Douglas added 10 points.

    Sales' running jumper brought the Sun within 66-65 with 30 seconds left, but the Mystics made free throws to seal the win.

    Stacey Dales-Schuman had eight points and a career-high 10 assists for the last-place Mystics (11-14), who snapped a two-game losing streak. Aiysha Smith matched her career-high with 10 points and six rebounds to help Washington avoid being swept in the four-game season series.

    "It was a whole team effort for us tonight," Mystics coach Michael Adams said. "To get this win, we needed everybody to perform."

    Washington led 41-34 at halftime.

    "It came down to offensive rebounds and missed free throws," Sun coach Mike Thibault said. "We were 3for15 from 3-point range and 11 for 20 from the free-throw line. That won't win too many games."

    Holdsclaw, the WNBA's third-leading rebounder, will miss Sunday's game against Phoenix before the league takes a monthlong break for the Olympics.

    "I feel no extra pressure," Beard said of playing without Holdsclaw. "It's not a one-person thing."

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

      Connecticut Washington
    Points 68 69
    FG Made-Attempted 27-61 (.000) 29-64 (.000)
    3P Made-Attempted 3-15 (.200) 4-8 (.500)
    FT Made-Attempted 11-20 (.000) 7-14 (.000)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-28 11-33
    Assists 17 21
    Turnovers 12 14
    Steals 9 8
    Blocks 4 7
    Fast Break Points 1 3
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 16 (0/0) 17 (0/0)