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Toler’s hot start helps L.A. knock off Cleveland, 87-66

SHARE Toler’s hot start helps L.A. knock off Cleveland, 87-66

Penny Toler scored 14 of her WNBA-career high 22 points in the opening 9:39, including four of a team-record eight 3-pointers, and the Los Angeles Sparks beat the Cleveland Rockers 87-66 Sunday.

Lisa Leslie added 18 points, pulled down 11 rebounds and had a career-high six steals as the Sparks (4-8) won for just the second time in their last eight games.Janice Braxton had 13 points for Cleveland (6-7), while Isabelle Fijalkowski added 12 and Michelle Edwards had 10.

Fijalkowski, who entered the game sharing the team scoring lead at 12.1, missed the previous two games because of a viral infection. Suzie McConnell Serio handed out 10 assists.

In the only other WNBA game on Sunday, Charlotte beat New York 75-57.

Edwards' basket pulled the Rockers within 57-55 with 12:04 left, but the Sparks responded with three 6-0 runs, outscoring Cleveland 30-11 over the remainder of the game.

Los Angeles, which led 29-15 with 10:49 left in the first half, had eight 3-pointers in taking a 42-36 halftime lead.

Toler set a team record for 3-pointers, breaking the previous mark of three shared by three players. The team record was five, set June 23, 1997.

Tamecka Dixon added 11 points for Los Angeles before an announced crowd of 7,032 at the Great Western Forum.

STING 75, LIBERTY 57: Andrea Congreaves scored 18 of her 23 points in the second half and Charlotte (11-3) extended its lead over second-place New York (8-7) in the Eastern Conference to 31/2 games.

Congreaves' 3-pointer capped a 13-2 run that gave the Sting a 45-27 lead with 15:22 to play.

Kym Hampton scored 12 points for New York, which lost for only the second time in eight games at home.