Sun use second-quarter run to sweep series vs. Sting

UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) -- Margo Dydek scored 17 points to lead six players in double figures as the Connecticut Sun pulled away from the Charlotte Sting in the second half for an 89-71 win Saturday.

"In the first half we got stuck playing on one side of the floor and didn't move the ball side to side," Sun coach Mike Thibault said. "We got our offense going in the second half
because we got deflections and steals and long rebounds to start the fast break. The defense got us started."

Taj McWilliams-Franklin had 12 points and a career-high 15 rebounds to match a team record she set on Aug. 12, 1999. It was the same one Dydek equaled in Connecticut's 89-65 victory over the Sting on Thursday in Charlotte. McWilliams-Franklin had 10
defensive rebounds to become the ninth player in WNBA history to pass 1,000 career defensive rebounds.

The Sting (1-4) opened the second quarter with a 9-2 run to take a 23-17 lead with 7:32 left, but the Sun (4-1) outscored them 16-8 the rest of the way to go into the halftime break with a 33-31 lead. Still, Thibault was exasperated with his team's early effort.

"He was disappointed in us," Sun guard Katie Douglas said about Thibault's halftime speech. "He didn't say much, and when he does that, you know he's kind of reached his limit with us. He felt we needed to force our tempo a little more. We had an unbelievable third quarter."

After struggling the first half, the Sun came out of the locker room with a 16-0 run to open the third quarter for a 49-31 lead.

The Sting were held without a field goal until Kelly Mazzante hit a 3-pointer with 4:33 left in the quarter. Prior to Mazzante's 3-pointer, the Sting had only one shot in the quarter, which was blocked by Dydek. The Sun also had seven steals to help fuel the run.

"I don't think it had anything to do with Connecticut. It was more so what we did," Sting guard Helen Darling said. "We stopped being aggressive offensively and turned the ball over. There were silly turnovers and they just capitalized on that."

The Sun shot just 7-for-21 in the first quarter but 29-for-47 (62 percent) the rest of the way. The Sun also outrebounded the Sting 41-28.

Katie Douglas had 14 points and four steals, while Lindsay Whalen added 14 points and four assists for Connecticut. Nykesha Sales had 12 points, eight rebounds and five assists. Asjha Jones came off the bench and chipped in 10 points and five rebounds.

"I think that's what you're supposed to get as a team by the time we get to this kind of maturity level," Thibault said. "Asjha gave us a great lift off the bench and I thought Margo has had a great week."

Mazzante led Charlotte with 13 points and Darling added 11.