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Charlotte stops Lynx to rise to top in East

A record-setting start against Minnesota put the Charlotte Sting alone atop the Eastern Conference.

Charlotte opened the game with a WNBA-record 21 straight points and Charlotte Smith-Taylor scored 13 in the Sting's 60-50 win over the Minnesota Lynx last night in Charlotte, N.C.

Tammy Sutton-Brown added 10 points for the Sting, who beat the Lynx for the second time in four days and took sole possession of first place in the Eastern Conference. Charlotte (16-15) has won three straight and holds a half-game lead over Connecticut.

The Lynx, weary from a 6:15 a.m. flight following Friday night's home win over Seattle, committed turnovers on seven of their first eight possessions and fell behind, 12-0. Fatigue was definitely a factor, Minnesota coach Suzie McConnell Serio said.

Shock 80, Mercury 72 -- Deanna Nolan scored 16 points, helping Detroit snap host Phoenix's four-game winning streak. Nolan hit a 17-footer with 1:33 left, giving Detroit a 70-69 lead, then made six straight free throws in the final 51 seconds. The Shock outscored Phoenix, 15-7, over the last three minutes.

Penny Taylor scored 23 points to lead the Mercury (16-14), who had won eight of nine and remained in fourth place in the Western Conference. Diana Taurasi added 19.

Detroit (15-17) played without leading scorer Swin Cash after she injured her left knee in a collision with Phoenix's Nikki McCray.

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