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Lynx group up to short-circuit Shock

Team effort would be an understatement to assess the performance of the Minnesota Lynx Wednesday afternoon against the Tulsa Shock at Target Center.

Minnesota forward Damiris Dantas (34) shoots a fade-away over Tulsa center Vicki Baugh (22). Dantas made 3 of 8 shots.
Matthew Fleegel
Maya Moore hit 10 of 18 shots in Wednesday's win over Tulsa. Of Moore's 9 30-point games, 3 have come against the Shock.
Matthew Fleegel

Six Lynx players broke the double-digit mark to formulate a 93-82 win. Maya Moore led the group with 32 points, marking the ninth time this season she has scored 30 or more in a game. Moore is now one game away from matching Diana Taurasi's WNBA record for most 30-point games in a season.

"My teammates do a great job of screening for me, and I try to take advantage of my size on the inside," Moore said.

Minnesota's (17-6) transition game was impeccable, getting a 23-4 edge in fast break points. Quick scores were fueled by the 17 turnovers they forced, leading to 26 points. The Lynx half-court game was almost as brilliant, hooking up no-look passes with impunity.

"They love throwing those long passes," said Tulsa forward Glory Johnson. "They are really good at that and that's how they get most teams."

The latest meeting between the two teams was another round of Minnesota pulling away only to be reeled in by a Tulsa (7-15) counter. The Lynx threw their colloquial knockout late in the fourth quarter. Following a pair of Odyssey Sims free throws to bring the Shock within three, 77-74, the Lynx went on a 14-6 run to clinch their fourth straight win. Moore completed the burst, going coast-to-coast after rebounding a missed three-point attempt from Skylar Diggins, creating an uncontested drive to the hoop.

"Tulsa is one of those teams that puts a lot of pressure on you. When they try to crash the offensive boards and we do get the rebound, we have numbers," Moore said.

Lindsay Whalen added 18 points, Monica Wright got 10 points and a career-high 5 steals, and Damiris Dantas picked up her third double-double of the season with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

Although Minnesota was out-rebounded 38-31, Dantas provided some clutch scoops at the glass, and even joined the no-look pass brigade with a dish to Whalen early in the fourth quarter.

"She played with an assertiveness that was fun to watch," said Minnesota coach Cheryl Reeve. "She has great agility, rebounded with two hands (and) was opportunistic going to the rim."

Tulsa was led by Skylar Diggins with 19 points, but she converted just 6 of 8 field goals. Johnson and Courtney Paris both registered double-doubles, with Johnson getting 16 points and 10 rebounds and Paris earning 12 points and 12 rebounds.

The Shock lost their fifth straight game of the season and their shot at a playoff berth is slowly dimming. Tulsa is currently 3.5 games behind Los Angeles for the last playoff spot, with one more game to go before they take their All-Star break.

"We have learned a lot from this game. (Jordan) Hooper learned a lot guarding Maya. We're getting there. We're gaining momentum," said Tulsa head coach Fred Williams.

Following the All-Star break, Minnesota's next game will be Tuesday, when they host Atlanta.

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