Game Recap: Fever 62, Sparks 80

LOS ANGELES — Chelsea Gray scored 16 points, and Nneka Ogwumike added 14 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Los Angeles Sparks to an 80-62 home win over the Indiana Fever, Monday at Staples Center.

Gray shot 7-of-9 from the floor to help Los Angeles remained unbeaten (9-0) on its home floor, while handing Indiana its fifth straight defeat. Ogwumike was 7-of-13 shooting and had a game-high six assists. Candace Parker added 14 points and nine rebounds, and Riquna Williams had 10 points off the bench.

Briann January scored 12 points for Indiana. Candice Dupree and Erica Wheeler each added 11. Rookie Erica McCall, playing near her hometown of Bakersfield, Calif., netted a career-high eight points.

Though the Fever kept things close with a barrage of first-half 3-point shooting, the Sparks used a steady and consistent third period to distance themselves from the visiting team. Los Angeles vanquished Indiana’s long distance shooting and scored 10 of the first 14 points of the second half to assert a 14-point lead. L.A. opened a 19-point lead when Gray’s jumper capped a 17-6 run since halftime, and the Sparks carried a 61-46 lead into the final period.

The top shooting and scoring team in the WNBA, Sparks shot 53 percent for the game and outmuscled the Fever for a whopping 52-16 scoring advantage in the paint. Indiana was limited to 40 percent shooting overall and had 18 turnovers.

Indiana kept pace in the first half on the strength of 6-of-13 3-point shooting. Tiffany Mitchell’s 3-pointer gave Indiana its only lead of the game, 27-26, but from that point the defending champions reeled off 10 unanswered points for a 37-27 bulge. The Sparks carried a 42-34 lead into intermission.

Indiana continues a four-game road swing when it visits Phoenix on Wednesday.

Highlights

Indiana Fever at Los Angeles Sparks
Briann January led the Fever with 12 points, two assists, and a pair of rebounds.
Candice Dupree reached double figures with 12 points and added four assists.
Erica Wheeler scored 11 points in the Fever’s loss.