LOS ANGELES — The Sparks will try to snap their three-game losing streak. To close their home stand, they will face the Dallas Wings on both games. The first one will be on Friday night and the second game will be on Sunday afternoon.
The good news is that they did beat the Dallas Wings the last time they faced them. In fact, that was the last time the Sparks won a game. On Wednesday, June 14th, the Sparks defeated the Wings, 79-61. The Wings have been 1-1 since that loss while we all know that the Sparks are on a three-game skid.
The tandem of Dearica Hamby (23 points, 8 boards) and Nneka Ogwumike (20 points, 10 boards) got it done for the Sparks on the 14th. The Sparks mostly concentrated on limiting Arike Ogunbowale and were pretty successful on doing that; Arike finished with only 13 points off 5 for 16 shooting. They’re going to have to do that again because we know what Arike is capable of. She scored 41 points against the Seattle Storm last Saturday.
But as mentioned before, it’s not like Arike is the only one they have to worry about. Satou Sabally is a double-double machine. Natasha Howard can get things done. Kalani Brown had a 21-11 game against the Sparks. Crystal Dangerfield returned recently. So just like every other WNBA team, Dallas has the talent to get it done. And with Arike in the game, they always have a chance.
The Sparks have had trouble putting games away as of late but they did finish off Dallas in their first meeting, limiting them to 10 points in the fourth quarter. Coach Curt Miller talked about having little goals in the fourth quarter and that worked well for them against Dallas.
But it’s hard to get that done when players are out. Lexie Brown is still listed as out as of this writing. Nia Clouden and Layshia Clarendon are also inactive; we know Layshia will be out for weeks.
The Sparks always hang around the whole game. They can play with every team; that’s never a question. It’s a question now on whether they can execute and get the bigger plays done at the end of the game.
If they can do that, the losing streak will be over. And they hope that happens tonight so they can get down on Friday.