SAN ANTONIO (AP) – Seimone Augustus scored 20 points and Maya Moore added 19 as the Minnesota Lynx clinched the top seed in the Western Conference with a 72-61 victory over the San Antonio Silver Stars on Sunday.
Minnesota (23-6) has won five straight games and swept the season series against San Antonio. It’s the first time in franchise history that the Lynx have earned the top seed in the West.
Ronneka Hodges led San Antonio (13-15) with 12 points, hitting 4 of 8 3-pointers. Jia Perkins and Tully Bevilaqua added 10 each for the Silver Stars, who have lost six straight.
Over their last 12 games, the Silver Stars have lost 10 while the Lynx have won 10. San Antonio started the season 5-1 but is now is only 1 1/2 games up on Los Angeles for the No. 4 seed in the West.
Minnesota held San Antonio to 30 percent shooting (19 of 63) from the field and outrebounded them 50-27. Lindsay Whalen had 10 points to join Augustus and Moore in double figures.
The Lynx didn’t score for nearly 5 minutes to start the fourth quarter, but the Silver Stars failed to take advantage. Moore scored eight points, hitting two 3-pointers, in the quarter to make sure Minnesota was never threatened.
The Lynx held the Silver Stars to 4-of-15 shooting from the field in the third quarter, helping them take a 10-point lead. The Lynx took their biggest lead of the game at 60-47 on a Jessica Adair jumper with 1 minute left, capping a 12-3 run. Bevilaqua hit a 3-pointer shortly before the third quarter ended to make it 60-50.
Augustus scored 16 first-half points on 8-of-12 shooting, as the Lynx shot 18 of 35 in the first two quarters to lead 42-40 at halftime. Minnesota outrebounded San Antonio 21-11 in the first half, but the Silver Stars hit 8 of 15 3-pointers to stay close.
The Lynx actually went up by nine points on two free throws by Moore before Hodges brought the Silver Stars back. Hodges hit four 3-pointers — three from the left corner and one from the right — in the quarter.
Augustus scored 12 points on 6-of-8 shooting to lead Minnesota to a 25-20 lead after the first quarter. Moore hit 3 of 4 shots and had seven points for the Lynx,who were 61 percent (11 of 18) from the field in the quarter.
After Danielle Adams hit a 3-pointer to put the Silver stars up 20-19, Augustus scored the final six points of the quarter. Adams, a rookie forward playing her first game at home since returning from a foot injury that cost her 11 games, had sparked the Silver Stars with a 3-pointer with 5:27 left in the first quarter.
Danielle Robinson followed by grabbing a long rebound and beating everyone down the floor for a layup to give San Antonio its first lead at 11-9.
Silver Stars leading scorer Becky Hammon, who was held scoreless in the teams’ meeting Friday, hit her first basket on a 3-pointer with 3:10 left in the first quarter. She finished with nine points.
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