Parker scores 29 points to lead Sparks over Sky

ROSEMONT, Illinois (AP) " Candace Parker scored 29 points and the Los Angeles Sparks beat the Chicago Sky 95-75 on Tuesday night to advance to the WNBA Finals.

Kristi Toliver added 21 points and league MVP Nneka Ogwumike had 17 points and nine rebounds for the Sparks, who led by as much as 28 and won the semifinal series 3-1.

They will face the defending champion Minnesota Lynx in a best-of-5 series for the league title. The top-seeded Lynx swept Phoenix in the other semifinal and will be going for their fourth title in six years. The second-seeded Sparks return to the finals for the first time since 2003 after winning championships in 2001 and 2002 with Lisa Leslie.

Cappie Pondexter scored 19 points and rookie Imani Boyette had 15 to lead the fourth-seeded Sky. Clarissa Dos Santos had 14 points and Jessica Breland added 12. Chicago played without 2015 MVP and leading scorer Elena Delle Donne, who has a thumb injury.

The Sparks won the first two games of the series by an average of 17.5 points before the Sky took Game 3 70-66 on Sunday.

After shooting 6-of-33 from beyond the arc in Game 3, the Sparks made 9 of their 13 3-pointers Tuesday.

Toliver hit all four of her 3s.

The Sparks shot 55 percent from the field and made 28 of their 30 free throws " including 14 of 15 by Parker.

The Sky went on a 19-9 run to pull within 10 in the third quarter. Pondexter scored 10 points in the period to help Chicago rally. The Sky got within eight on Erika de Souza's layup before Parker scored the next eight points on a 3-pointer and five free throws to put the game away.

Los Angeles made 12 of its 16 shots in the second quarter and built the lead to 28. The Sparks outscored the Sky 32-20 in the quarter to take a 55-31 halftime advantage. Parker led the Sparks with 13 points, Toliver had 12 and Ogwumike added 10 by the half.

The Sparks led 23-11 after the first quarter after holding the Sky to 5-for-19 shooting.

This story has been automatically published from the Associated Press wire which uses US spellings

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