UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) - Kara Lawson was pleased that the Connecticut Sun found a way to win a close game.
Lawson had 22 points and four rebounds and the Sun outlasted the Indiana Fever 88-85 in overtime on Tuesday.
Tina Charles had 14 points and eight rebounds for Connecticut (9-2), which leads the Eastern Conference. Renee Montgomery had 12 points and four rebounds and Kalana Greene scored 12 points.
``Facing pressure situations and being forced to execute against great players, that's what we need right now,' Lawson said. ``We don't need a bunch of 30 or 40-point blowouts.
``We need to have our feet put to the fire in the regular season so, come playoff time, when we go into overtime, we not only have that sense of calm, but we just have great confidence that we can make plays and win the game.'
Katie Douglas had a game-high 23 points and nine rebounds and four assists for the Fever (5-4). Tamika Catchings added 14 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
Connecticut has won six of its past seven games.
The Sun trailed by two with less than three minutes remaining in overtime when Charles made the second of two free throws.
On Connecticut's next possession, Allison Hightower drove left to the rim, then passed to Charles on the right for a layup and an 86-85 Sun lead with 41.7 seconds left.
Asjha Jones, playing with five fouls, blocked Catchings' shot and grabbed the ball.
Lawson made a pull-up jumper with 5.2 seconds left for the game's final points.
``It's a great win,' Connecticut coach Mike Thibault said. ``To get your composure back in the overtime and make big plays, that says a lot.'
The Fever trailed 81-76 with less than two minutes left in regulation when it forced a Connecticut shot clock violation.
Douglas made a 3-pointer to make it 81-79.
Catchings drove for a layup to tie the game at 81-81 with 13.6 seconds left.
Jones missed a jumper at the buzzer and the game went to overtime.
Connecticut scored the game's first seven points and led by as much as 12 points late in the first quarter.
``We just didn't come out the way we'd like to,' Douglas said. ``Give them credit.
``I'm proud of that we had showed a lot of resiliency, character and perseverance in order to kind of claw back. . We definitely got back in the game and gave ourselves a chance to win, but ultimately we'd like to not use a lot of energy and effort to get back in the game.'
Indiana played from behind for almost the entire game. It was down 54-44 with more than six minutes left to play in the third quarter when it stormed back with a 13-1 run. It featured a Catchings block on Hightower, leading to a Douglas 3-pointer on the other end.
Phillips finished the run with a 3-pointer as the Fever took their first lead of the game 57-55 with more than two minutes left in the quarter.
The teams play again Thursday at Indiana.
The Associated Press News Service
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