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Leslie, Sparks bury Rockers

L.A. center pours in 22 as Sparks win eighth straight

SHARE Leslie, Sparks bury Rockers

Sparks 75, Rockers 67

INGLEWOOD, Calif. — Lisa Leslie scored 22 points as the Los Angeles Sparks extended their franchise-record winning streak to eight games with a 75-67 victory over Cleveland on Saturday night.

DeLisha Milton had 14 points and 12 rebounds for Los Angeles (12-2). Tamecka Dixon scored 12 after missing Wednesday's victory at Indiana because of a sprained left ankle. Reserve Allison Feaster added 10, including two 3-pointers in the second half.

Chasity Melvin led Cleveland (7-7) with 18 points. Merlakia Jones added 14 and Mery Andrade had 11.

Leslie's 7-foot jumper with 2:34 left broke a 64-64 tie. Milton put the Sparks up 68-64 with a layup after an offensive rebound. After Andrade made one of two free throws, Leslie's 9-footer increased Los Angeles' lead to 70-65 with 56.3 seconds left.

Melvin's basket pulled the Rockers within three at 70-67 with 45.7 seconds to play, but the Sparks sealed the victory by scoring the final four points.

Trailing 37-35 entering the second half, Cleveland opened the half by scoring six unanswered points on baskets by Andrade, Jones and Rushia Brown. Leslie had five points during an ensuing 9-2 spurt, which put Los Angeles ahead 46-44. Jones' two free throws with 2:45 left capped an 8-0 run that tied it at 64.

SOL 54, FEVER 52: At Indianapolis, Sheri Sam scored 22 points and the Miami Sol weathered a second-half rally to defeat the Indiana Fever.

Sam hit two 3-pointers to open the second half as Miami (5-10) went on a 14-4 run while holding Indiana (3-11) to one field goal over the first eight minutes.

Indiana played without starting center Kara Wolters, serving a one-game suspension for leaving the bench in the second half of Friday's loss at New York, when teammate Rita Williams was flagrantly fouled by Jessica Bibby of the Liberty.

Wolters, the Fever's leading scorer and rebounder, was also fined $500.

Indiana trailed 40-27 after the Sol's second-half burst, but used full-court pressure to go on a 21-5 run over the next 6:26. Danielle McCulley's short jumper gave the Fever a 48-45 lead with 5:11 remaining.

Sam scored on a layup after a steal, then hit two free throws as Miami regained the lead and snapped a four-game skid.

McCulley's 17 points weren't enough to keep Indiana from losing its sixth straight game.

Alicia Thompson added 11 points for the Fever, who are 1-7 at home.

MIRACLE 69, LIBERTY, 57: At Orlando, Fla., Taj McWilliams scored 12 of her 16 points in the second half as the Orlando Miracle held off the New York Liberty.

Orlando's Shannon Johnson had four of her game-high 23 points in a 7-0 run to end the game after New York pulled to 62-57 on Tari Phillips' basket. Johnson also had 11 rebounds for her fourth double-double this season.

It was the third consecutive victory and fifth in six games for the Eastern Conference-leading Miracle (10-6). Orlando snapped New York's two-game winning streak.

Phillips had 15 of her 21 points in the second half to lead New York (7-8). Crystal Robinson added 12 points, including three 3-pointers, and Becky Hammon had 10 points for the Liberty.

MYSTICS 78, STING 74: At Charlotte, N.C., Nikki McCray scored 18 points to lead the Washington Mystics to the victory over Charlotte for the Sting's WNBA-record ninth consecutive home loss.

Charlotte (2-13) has lost five straight and 18 of its last 20 regular-season games, dating back to last season. The nine straight home losses breaks the mark of eight straight, previously held by Washington.

MONARCHS 108, SHOCK 96: At Sacramento, Calif., Tangela Smith and Kedra Holland-Corn scored 19 points apiece as Sacramento defeated Detroit in a game that set a WNBA record for total points.

The victory improved Sacramento to 7-0 at home. The Monarchs (11-5) established a franchise-high point total in winning for the sixth time in seven games.

Detroit (7-7) had its three-game road winning streak snapped.

Wendy Palmer had 20 points and nine rebounds for Detroit before fouling out. Elena Tornikidou scored 16 points and Tamicha Jackson added 14.

Sacramento's Ticha Penicheiro finished with 17 points and 14 assists, and Yolanda Griffith added 18 points and 11 rebounds.