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Collier powers Lynx to win and series sweep of Sparks

Napheesa Collier Minnesota Lynx Napheesa Collier - Getty Images

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Napheesa Collier scored eight points in a late 12-0 run and finished with 22 points as the Minnesota Lynx defeated the Los Angeles Sparks 73-70 on Thursday night.

Collier scored 10 of her points in the fourth quarter as the Lynx (10-12) won despite squandering a 20-point lead, completing a season sweep of Los Angeles (7-14), which matched a franchise record with its seventh straight loss.

Rookies Dorka Juhasz and Diamond Miller played key roles in the win. Juhasz scored a career-high 16 points on 7-for-10 shooting and grabbed 10 rebounds. Miller added 13 points, a career-high nine assists and eight rebounds.

Los Angeles went on a 9-0 run and led 68-61 with four minutes left. Collier countered with a putback, a pair of layups and a short turnaround jumper and her teammates added four free throws as Minnesota took a 73-68 lead with 42 seconds remaining.

Jordin Canada ended the Sparks' scoring drought as Los Angeles closed within three points and, after a Minnesota miss, Nneka Ogwumike's 3-point try spun out at the buzzer.

Ogwumike led the Sparks with 19 points. Lexie Brown, back in the lineup after missing more than a month, scored 13 points off the bench. Canada added 12 points and Layshia Clarendon had 11.

Ogwumike scored 13 points in the first quarter for the Sparks. The Lynx had a 28-10 scoring advantage in the second with Juhasz scoring 10 as Minnesota built a 46-29 lead at the break.

Los Angeles closed the third quarter with an 18-2 run, outscoring the Lynx 26-11 in the period and pulling within 57-55.