MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - The surging Minnesota Lynx took advantage of Los Angeles' 25 turnovers to set a record in another big win.
Seimone Augustus scored 22 points as the Lynx scored a franchise-record 35 points off turnovers and went on to beat the the Sparks 85-72 on Tuesday night for their sixth win in seven games.
``I was really happy with the fact that we turned them over 25 times - 17 times in the first half,' Minnesota coach Cheryl Reeve said. ``We like to score off of that.'
Lindsay Whalen had 16 points and seven assists and Taj McWilliams-Franklin added 14 points and nine rebounds for the Lynx (11-4). Minnesota, which never trailed, held a 20-point lead at one point for the eighth time this season and showed no signs of rust from the All-Star break.
``Everybody was happy to see each other after having these days off, so we just kind of clicked immediately,' Augustus said. ``We had fun tonight more than anything and just enjoyed being back on the court with our teammates.'
After needing 28 games to reach 11 wins last season, the Lynx did it in their 15th game this year, and are off to the best start in franchise history.
Minnesota won despite the ejection of All-Star forward Rebekkah Brunson in the fourth quarter after she was whistled for her second technical foul. Brunson finished with six points and six rebounds in nearly 24 minutes.
Kristi Toliver scored 28 points and Ebony Hoffman had 24 for the Sparks (6-9), who lost their third straight to fall to 2-3 since interim coach Joe Bryant replaced Jennifer Gillom on July 12.
Minnesota led by 16 in the first half and had a 43-30 advantage at the break. The Lynx opened up a double-digit lead for the 13th time in 15 games this season, as Lindsay Whalen and Taj McWilliams-Franklin each had 10 points early on. Ebony Hoffman had 13 points for the Sparks in the opening 20 minutes.
The Sparks hit three 3-pointers early in the third, whittling Minnesota's lead to just four, but the rally was short-lived once Augustus began to find the basket. The Lynx went on a 14-1 run and led by as many as 22.
``We had a couple of miscues once we came back,' Bryant said. ``For three quarters we played well - the second, the third and the fourth we played good basketball. But that first quarter just dug us in a hole.'
The Associated Press News Service
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