Diggins-Smith’s huge game lifts Phoenix over Connecticut

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Skylar Diggins-Smith scored a season-high 33 points, including a tying 35-footer at the end of regulation, Diana Taurasi added 28, and the Phoenix Mercury gave up a 22-point lead before beating the Connecticut Sun 100-95 in overtime on Wednesday night.

Brianna Turner had 10 points, a career-high 21 rebounds, five assists and four blocks for Phoenix (13-8). The Mercury have won seven of their last eight games to pull within a half-game of the fourth-place Minnesota Lynx.

Taurasi hit a 3-pointer — her fifth of the game — with 1:46 to play to break a 91-all tie and give the Mercury the lead for good. Diggins-Smith added a jumper 55 seconds later and Taurasi made two free throws to cap a 7-1 spurt that made it 98-92 with 15.4 seconds to go.

DeWanna Bonner had 32 points and 10 rebounds and Alyssa Thomas added 18 points, 17 rebounds, five assists and three steals for Connecticut (10-11).


Jewell Loyd and Breanna Stewart scored 23 points apiece and the Seattle Storm used an 11-0 run to pull away for good in their win over the Wings.

Stewart added 11 rebounds, six assists, three steals and two blocks to help the Storm wrap up one of the top two seeds in the playoffs and earn a double-bye to the semifinals. Natasha Howard had 16 points and eight rebounds, Alysha Clark scored 14 points and Sue Bird added 10 points and nine assists for the Storm before she left the game after banging knees with Satou Sabally midway through the fourth quarter.

Seattle (17-3) has won six games in a row and leads Las Vegas by 1 1/2 games for the No. 1 seed in the playoffs, which begin Sept. 15. The Aces play the third-place Los Angeles Sparks on Saturday before closing the regular season against Seattle on Sunday.

Dallas (7-13) is a half-game in front of Washington and one ahead of Atlanta for the final playoff spot.

DREAM 97, SKY 89

Betnijah Laney had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Courtney Williams added 20 points and 10 boards, and the Dream beat the Sky to keep their playoff hopes alive.

Chennedy Carter had 16 points, Blake Dietrich scored 15 and Elizabeth Williams added 11 points and 10 rebounds for Atlanta (6-14), which trails Dallas by a game for the final playoff spot.

Courtney Vandersloot finished with 22 points and 11 assists. Kahleah Copper and Allie Quigley added 17 points apiece for Chicago (11-10). The Sky have lost four consecutive games and six of their last seven.

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