- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 7, 2009

From combined dispatches

MYSTICS 82, SUN 70: Rookie Marissa Coleman scored 16 points and Washington beat Connecticut on Saturday in the season opener in Uncasville, Conn.

Monique Currie scored 14 points, Lindsey Harding added 12, and Nakia Sanford had 11 for the Mystics, who also outrebounded Connecticut 44-26.

Coleman was 6-for-9 from the field and made all four of her 3-pointers.

“She’s awesome,” Washington coach Julie Plank said of Coleman, who played at Maryland. “She does it all. We count on her three ball and she’s not afraid to take shots.”

Asjha Jones led Connecticut with 22 points. Lindsay Whalen had 21 and Kiesha Brown had 10.

Washington built a 17-point lead before seeing it cut to six by the start of the fourth quarter. The Mystics scored the first six points of the final period to put the game away.

It was the first win in Plank’s coaching career.

“I’m excited for our franchise,” Plank said. “I love this team. I think we can get better and better. It’s a great start for us.”

The Sun, who missed 25 of their first 34 shots, shot 36 percent for the game.

“I think they wanted it more than we did,” Sun guard Erin Phillips said.

SPARKS 78, SHOCK 58: Tina Thompson had 18 points, Betty Lennox added 17 points and 10 rebounds and host Los Angeles easily defeated defending champion Detroit.

Lisa Leslie had an off night for the Sparks, scoring just six points, but Los Angeles had plenty of star power to back up the four time-Olympic Gold medalist - even with Candace Parker sidelined.

Parker, last year’s WNBA MVP, had a baby in May and likely will return in July. Thompson, the league’s second leading scorer behind Leslie, was added during the offseason in an attempt to offset that void.

STORM 71, MONARCHS 61: Lauren Jackson scored 23 points and Tanisha Wright added 21 to help Seattle win at Sacramento in the season opener.

Jackson scored seven points in the final four minutes as Seattle closed the game on a 13-2 run.

Laura Harper had 11 points and six rebounds for the Monarchs, who shot 33 percent. Ticha Penicheiro added 11 points.

Sue Bird added seven points and eight assists for Seattle.

DREAM 87, FEVER 86 (2OT): Chamique Holdsclaw scored 23 points in her first game in two years to lead Atlanta to a double overtime victory at home over Indiana.

Holdsclaw, who retired after playing just five games for Los Angeles in 2007, came two points shorts of becoming the ninth player in WNBA history to score 4,000 career points. She got her 300th career steal.

Erika DeSouza added 16 points and grabbed 17 rebounds for Atlanta, which set a league record last season by losing its first 17 games.

LYNX 102, SKY 85: Seimone Augustus scored 23 points and Candice Wiggins added 20 as new-look Minnesota opened with a home win against Chicago.

Charde Houston had 15 points for Minnesota, which was the league’s second-highest scoring team last season.

Jia Perkins finished with 24 points for Chicago.

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