Shock suffers fifth straight loss, 92-78

altThe Minnesota Lynx spoiled the homecoming party for the Tulsa Shock (3-8) on Saturday at the BOK Center, completing a sweep of the back-to-back home-and-home series with a 92-78 win. Candice Wiggins led all scorers with 19 points while teammates Seimone Augusta and Rebekkah Brunson added 16 and 14 points respectively to help the Lynx get past the struggling Shock. The trio is finally getting back to form after each missed several games earlier in the season for Minnesota (4-9).

While both teams shot a respectable 50 percent from the field, the Lynx excelled and ultimately pulled away from the Shock thanks to a great night from behind the three-point arc. Minnesota hit 12 of 19 shots from long range, as Wiggins led the way with five treys. Scholanda Robinson led the Shock with 14 points, eight of which she sank in the second half, but it would not be enough for Tulsa to snap a losing streak that now stands at five straight.

“They’ve got major players back, big time players,” said head coach Nolan Richardson of the Lynx. “It just goes to show you they were good without them but now they’re real good with them.”

The game opened nicely for the home team with Kara Braxton providing six points just over one minute into the opening quarter to give the Shock and early lead. “When she’s fresh and going hard, we try to get it to her,” said Richardson. “After a while she gets winded and it’s all because of conditioning and trying to get in shape. Hopefully as we continue to play I think she’ll show us something very special.”

The Lynx finally got on the board just over a minute later when Lindsay Whalen sank a layup to pull within four. From there the two squads traded the lead four times in a back and forth quarter of action. 

Tulsa displayed sound shooting, as they hit seven of 11 shots from the field. Minnesota would take the lead for the first time with just under two minutes left when Augusta sank a trey to put the Lynx up by one. The Shock reclaimed a three-point lead late in the period, before the Lynx took a 23-21 lead into the break.

Minnesota continued their offensive outpouring in the second quarter, connecting on all four three-point attempts and 11 of 14 from the field as they outscored Tulsa 24-19. Wiggins led all scorers in the quarter with six points as the Lynx lead grew to as much as nine at one point. Natasha Lacy scored five points while the Lynx took a 47-40 lead into the locker room at half time.

For the second straight night, a poor second half doomed the Shock and negated their comeback hopes. The Lynx extended their lead to 17 points with just over four minutes remaining in the third before Tulsa would close the gap to 11 at the end of the quarter. Shanna Crossley paced all scorers in the quarter with seven while Tulsa’s shot percentage continued to hover around the 50 percent mark.

Tulsa pulled within 10 points twice in the final quarter before the Lynx used a 10-1 run in the middle of the frame to put the game out of reach. With just under two minutes remaining, Minnesota made a wholesale line change like you would see in a hockey game, replacing their starters for the remainder of the night. Amber Holt, who entered the night averaging 11.6 points per game, was held scoreless for the first time this season.

While times certainly seem to he rough right now for the Shock, Richardson continued to display optimism in his post game interview. “We’re going to get better,” Richardson said. “My job is to build this thing from the ground up and I can see light at the end of the tunnel because I’ve got some real good ladies that are in the program that I think will get us turned around.” 


Photos by: Kevin Pyle

Next up for the Shock is an 11 a.m. start at the Atlanta Dream on Wednesday, before they return home to host the New York Liberty at 7 p.m. Friday night. Tickets for all future Shock home games are on sale at the BOK Center box office, online, or by calling 599-WNBA.



















Attendance: 5,013. Officials: Lamont Simpson, Penny Davis, Marcus Clayton. Time of game: 2:00.

Minnesota – Wiggins 19, Whalen 17, Augustus 16, Brunson 14, Houston 9, Maiga-Ba 8, Anosike 7, Hollingsworth 2

Tulsa – Robinson 14, Hornbuckle 12, Braxton 10, N. Lacy 10, Crossley 9, Jackson 6, Brown 5, Black 5, Jones 4, J. Lacy 3