AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) -- The Charlotte Sting don't exactly
know what happened to them during the All-Star break.
They just hope it keeps happening.
After going into the break with a 3-16 record, the Sting have
won three straight, including a 73-67 victory over red-hot Detroit
"We're just playing basketball," said Sheri Sam, who had 15
points. "I think we're finally just playing."
Charlotte's victory was only its second in 11 road games this
"We were playing 30 good minutes and 10 minutes where we didn't
play well, and that was costing us ball games," said Sting coach
Muggsy Bogues. "Now we're putting it together
The Shock had won 10 of 12 entering the game, but couldn't stop
the Sting down the stretch. Detroit either tied the game or took a
one-point lead eight times in the second half, but Charlotte
responded with a basket every time.
"We could not get a stop when we needed one," Detroit coach
Bill Laimbeer said. "However, it was our offense that put us in
the position, and we should have never been there. "We didn't move
the ball like a team that wants to play high-level basketball."
Charlotte, which hadn't won in Detroit since July 3, 2003, got
15 points from Tangela Smith, while Monique Currie added 14 points
and Tammy Sutton-Brown had 11 points and a season-high 12 rebounds.
Reserve Plenette Pierson led the Shock (14-7) with a season-high
19 points, but only two starters reached double figures.
"I thought we played pretty well, but we just could not make a
shot," said Deanna Nolan, who scored nine before fouling out.
"They made shots, and you just have to live with that sometimes."
Detroit shot 30 percent in the first half and fell behind 33-28
at the break.
Pierson, who led the Shock with eight points in the first half,
had seven in the third quarter. Her two free throws pulled Detroit
within 49-48 heading into the fourth quarter.
Charlotte took a 59-54 lead with 5:30 to play, and the Shock
could get no closer.
"We're finally starting to close games out," Bogues said.
Detroit's Ruth Riley left the game in the final minute with a
hyperextended right elbow.