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Monarchs pass Mercury with win

SHARE Monarchs pass Mercury with win

PHOENIX — Yolando Griffith scored 16 points to lead Sacramento over Phoenix 70-63 Sunday, giving the Monarchs a half-game lead over the Mercury in WNBA's Western Conference.

Sacramento has won three straight games and five of its last six. The loss snapped a three-game Phoenix winning streak.

Tangela Smith added 12 points, and Ticha Penicheiro had 11 assists for Sacramento. Jennifer Gillom led Phoenix with 23 points, and Brandy Reed had 16.

Sacramento broke the game open by outscoring Phoenix 16-9 in the first eight minutes of the second half to go up 51-39. Smith led the surge with six points. Phoenix climbed within four points in the final minute, but got no closer.

The teams split two previous games this season.

Griffith scored nine points in the first half, and the Monarchs led 35-30 at intermission.

The Monarchs controlled the boards, outrebounding the Mercury 30-24. Sacramento's bench outscored the Phoenix reserves 14-2.