MINNEAPOLIS (AP)Napheesa Collier had 22 points, six rebounds, seven assists and a career-high tying four steals to help the Minnesota Lynx beat the Indiana Fever 90-80 on Sunday night.
The Lynx (20-10), who play at Indiana on Friday before their regular-season finale at Washington on Sunday, took over third place in the standings. Minnesota sits a half-game in front of the Seattle Storm and one game ahead of Phoenix. The top four teams earn a first-round bye in the playoffs.
Minnesota took a 10-point lead into halftime and led most of the game. McBride hit a 3-pointer to give the Lynx a 78-76 lead and spark a 15-4 run over the final five minutes.
Kelsey Mitchell led Indiana (6-23) with 25 points and McCowan scored 17. Tiffany Mitchell, Victoria Vivians and Lindsay Allen added 10 points apiece.
MYSTICS 79, SKY 71
CHICAGO (AP) – Tina Charles had 31 points, 10 rebounds and five assists to help the Mystics beat the Sky..
The Mystics (12-18) – who played without Elena Delle Donne (back), Ariel Atkins (personal reasons) and Myisha Hines-Allen (non-COVID illness) – have a one-game lead, with two games to play, over the Los Angeles Sparks and the New York Liberty for the final playoff spot.
Charles scored 10 points and hit two of Washington’s five 3-pointers during a 21-1 run that gave the Mystics the lead for good. Chicago went scoreless over the last four minutes of the first quarter as the Mystics ripped off 15 consecutive points. After a defensive 3-seconds technical foul, Allie Quigley made a free throw to snap a scoring drought of nearly seven minutes but Charles and Leilani Mitchell made back-to-back 3s to cap the spurt and made it 30-15 with 7:08 left in the first half.
Chicago (15-15) needs to win one of its final two games to secure the No. 6 seed – and a first-round game at home – in the playoffs.
SPARKS 81, STORM 53
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Te’a Cooper scored 19 points, Nneka Ogwumike and Erica Wheeler added 17 points apiece, and the Sparks routed the Storm to keep their playoff hopes alive.
The Sparks (11-19) pulled into a tie with the New York Liberty, one game behind the Washington Mystics for the eighth and final playoff spot with two games to play.
Brittney Sykes had 15 points and a season-high tying 10 rebounds for Los Angeles.
Seattle (20-11) fell into fourth place, a half-game behind Minnesota and a half-game ahead of fifth-place Phoenix. The Storm were missing Breanna Stewart, who will also miss the regular season finale because of a foot injury.