Lynx build big lead early, hold off Fever 74-71

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Lindsay Whalen and Seimone Augustus scored 12 points each and the Minnesota Lynx held off a late charge to beat the Indiana Fever 74-71 on Friday night in a rematch of last season's WNBA Finals.

Whalen had 10 points in the first five minutes and the Lynx (5-0) outscored the Fever 29-6 in the first quarter. Minnesota had its largest lead of 24 early in the second half, but the Fever (2-2) rallied within 73-70 with 33 seconds left in the game.

The Lynx were still up by three when they sent Tiffany Mitchell to the foul line with 3.5 seconds left. Mitchell made the first and missed the second intentionally, but the rebound went out of bounds off Indiana.

Augustus made 1 of 2 foul shots with 0.7 seconds and the Fever failed to take a final shot before the buzzer.

Natasha Howard added 11 points and Maya Moore had nine points and eight assists. The Lynx - No. 1 in the AP WNBA power poll -have won the last 10 regular-season games against the fifth-ranked Fever. It was their first meeting since last year's final which Minnesota in five games.

Mitchell had 16 points for the Fever. Erica Wheeler added 13 points and Maggie Lucas scored 12 before suffering a bruised knee.

The Fever's Shenise Johnson did not play due to concussion protocol and will also miss Sunday's matchup at Atlanta.

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