Sun hold of Mystics comeback attempt


Sun hold of Mystics comeback attempt

UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) -- Tina Charles was determined to atone for her previous effort. The Sun's star center had 30 points, nine rebounds and four assists as Connecticut held off the Washington Mystics 94-86 on Sunday. Kara Lawson had 18 points and four assists for the Sun (4-1). Asjha Jones added 10 points, four rebounds and two steals. Charles had 20 points and 12 rebounds against the defending WNBA champion Minnesota Lynx. But she was scoreless in the fourth quarter, however, and had just one rebound as Minnesota won 85-72. "I definitely wasn't happy with that," Charles said. "I know my role on this team. I know my team looks to me offensively and defensively, so I'm just going out there and playing hard." Charles made eight of 14 field goals in the first half for 18 points. Crystal Langhorne had 25 points and five rebounds for Washington (1-4). Reserve Jasmine Thomas made three 3-pointers and scored 17 with three steals. It was the third straight loss for the Mystics. To their credit, they continue to play hard. Washington trailed the Lynx by 24 points in the third quarter of Wednesday's game before falling on a last-second shot. The Mystics led Chicago by seven points with 1:22 left on Friday before losing at the buzzer. Washington trailed Connecticut by as much as 14 points (57-43) with less than two minutes left in the third quarter. The Mystics cut their deficit to three points (78-75) with a little over two minutes left in the game. "We have a lot of fighters on our team and we're going to keep on fighting," Langhorne said. "We're going to keep playing hard and we're going to get a win." Both teams shot exceptionally well from the field. Connecticut shot 52.5-percent (32 of 61). The Mystics shot almost as well. They made 32 of 66 shots (48.5-percent). Connecticut was clinging to a four-point lead with less than two minutes remaining in the game when it managed to get a little breathing room. A Lawson layup and two free throws by Kalana Greene pushed the Sun ahead, 84-76, with 1:06 remaining. The Mystics continued to fire away at Connecticut, though. Thomas and Noelle Quinn made back-to-back 3-pointers to cut their team's deficit to 90-86 with 19.5 seconds left. The Sun's Allison Hightower and Danielle McCray each made two free throws to end the scoring. Connecticut made a franchise-record 19 free throws (on 21 attempts) in the fourth quarter. It made 17 free throws against the now-defunct Charlotte Sting on July 6, 2006. "We knew when we got a double-digit lead in the third quarter that we'd have to execute and play well in the fourth," Lawson said. "They made a good run at us and made some threes down the stretch, but we made our free throws." Neither team could stop the other in the fourth quarter with the Mystics outscoring the Sun, 36-35. The 35 points tied a Connecticut franchise record. The Sun also set a franchise record for points in a half with 60 in the second half. They scored 59 against Minnesota on Aug. 3, 2010.

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Five observations from Ravens' tight victory over the Jaguars

Five observations from Ravens' tight victory over the Jaguars

JACKSONVILLE – Five instant observations from watching the unbeaten Ravens (3-0) defeat the Jaguars, 19-17, to keep the Jaguars (0-3) winless:

1. The Ravens aren’t pretty, but they are resilient.

— The Ravens made enough mistakes to lose this game, but found a way to win it. Joe Flacco threw two interceptions, Devin Hester muffed a punt, and there were untimely penalties on the offensive line.

Yet, Ravens defensive end Brent Urban made a huge play late in the game, blocking a 52-yard field goal attempt with just over two minutes to play. Then Justin Tucker delivered with a 54-yard field goal, and Ravens linebacker Zachary Orr sealed the win with a last-minute interception.

2. Having Tucker is a huge advantage for the Ravens.

— Tucker’s game-winning field goal, one of his four field goals on the day, was another example of why the Ravens franchised tagged him before giving him a contract extension.  For a team that plays plenty of close games, Tucker is a crucial weapon. There was never a doubt on his game-winning kick as soon as it left his foot.

3. Ravens inside linebacker C. J. Mosley is playing at a high level.

—Mosley had his second interception in two weeks, making an acrobatic grab when he leaped high in the air, and tipped the ball to himself. He also had a batted pass in the fourth quarter that stopped another Jaguars drive. Mosley looks locked in and could be headed for another Pro Bowl season.

4. There is nothing wrong with Flacco’s mobility. 

— The Ravens’ first touchdown came on a seven-yard Flacco scramble, when he escaped the pocket and ran into the end zone untouched, after no Jaguars accounted for him.

Nobody will confuse Flacco with Olympic sprinter Usain Bolt. However, Flacco shows no evidence of being gun shy after last season’s season ending knee injury. He also had a six-yard gain on a quarterback bootleg. The knee injury is clearly in Flacco’s rearview mirror.

5. There is something wrong with the Ravens’ rushing attack

— For the third streak week, the Ravens couldn’t move the ball consistently on the ground.

The long run for the day was a 15-yarder by Terrance West (10 carries, 45 yards), but neither he nor Justin Forsett (seven carries, 20 yards) did much business. Melvin Gordon of the Chargers had 102 yards rushing against the Jaguars in Week 2, and the Ravens expected to have more success. It will be hard for them to keep winning against better teams unless their offense finds more balance.

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Redskins get first win, capitalize on turnovers to edge Giants 29-27

Redskins get first win, capitalize on turnovers to edge Giants 29-27

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ— The Redskins went into the Meadowlands and had a back-and-forth slugfest with the Giants. Many of the problems that have plagued them all year were in full display, including an inability to score from the red zone. But they fought and scrapped and took the lead with a 37-yard Dustin Hopkins field goal with 1:51 left.

A diving interception by Su’a Cravens killed a last Giants drive and the Redskins were able to kill the clock and walk out of MetLife Stadium with a 29-27 win.

The Redskins fell behind 14-3 in the first quarter but they battled back to take a 23-21 lead early in the third.

There was what could have been a costly moment at the end of the first half. The Redskins were down at the New York four with six second left in the half. With no timeouts they had one play to try to get into the end zone. But Cousins was sacked and the clock ran out, leaving an easy three and possibly seven points on the table. But, in the end, it didn’t cost the Redskins.

Josh Norman did match up with Odell Beckham for most of the day, as was widely anticipated. Beckham had his moments, catching 7 passes for 121 yards. But Norman’s team left with the win.

Quinton Dunbar became the first Redskin since 200 to have both a reception and an interception on the same game. He caught a 31-yard pass from Tress Way on a fake punt and he made a leaping interception in the end zone to prevent a Giants score.  

 Injury Updates:

CB Bashaud Breeland left the game with a lower leg injury, his return was questionable. He was later downgraded to out with an ankle injury.

C Kory Lichtensteiger left the game in the first quarter after being poked in the eye. He returned the next series.

S DeAngelo Hall left the game in the second quarter with a right knee sprain. He did not return.

WR DeSean Jackson left to game just before halftime to be evaluated for a left knee or ankle injury. He returned to the game in the second half.

G Shawn Lauvao left the game in the third quarter with an ankle injury and did not return.

C Kory Lichtensteiger left the game in the third quarter with a calf injury and did not return.

Scoring drives:  

First quarter            

Vereen 1 run (Brown kick)

Drive: 3 plays, 28 yards, 1:05

Drive summary: The Giants went three and out on their first series but Quinton Dunbar touched the punt and New York recovered at the Washington 28. From there Shane Vereen ran for 15 and then Manning went to Sterling Shepard for 12 yards to the one. Vereen went right up the middle into the end zone from there and the Redskins’ good start turned bad in a hurry.

Giants 7, Redskins 0 12:18          


Hopkins FG 49

Drive: 7 plays, 29 yards, 2:43

Drive summary: The Redskins got good field position after the kickoff went out of bounds. Chris Thompson ran eight yards for one first down and Cousins went to Pierre Garçon for another. But on third and two Cousins misfired for Jordan Reed and Hopkins came on to boom the long field goal through.

Giants 7, Redskins 3 9:35            


Shepard 23 pass from Manning (Brown kick)

Drive: 8 plays, 75 yards, 3:25

Drive summary: Shane Vereen got the Giants to midfield with a 14-yard run up the middle. They Manning tossed a short pass to running back Bobby Rainey, who scooted for 24 yards to the Washington 23. Two plays later Sterling Shepard got a step on Dashaun Phillips and Manning lofted it over his head and into Sterling’s hands for the touchdown.

Giants 14, Redskins 3 6:10          


FG Hopkins 33

Drive: 11 plays, 60 yards, 5:45

Drive summary: The Redskins got a couple of third-down conversions, one on a pass from Cousins to Reed and another on a pass to Crowder. In between Cousins hit Pierre Garçon over the middle for a gain of 20. But the drive stalled when a pass from Cousins to Crowder was short and Hopkins came in to kick the field goal.  

Giants 10, Redskins 0 0:25          


Second quarter

FG Hopkins 45

Drive: 7 plays, 9 yards, 3:58

Drive summary: The Redskins got good field position on a spectacular 50-yard punt return by Jamison Crowder. They quickly faced a third down but Cousins fired to Garçon for nine yards to convert. But a couple of penalties pushed them back and Hopkins had to come on to boot another field goal.

Giants 14, Redskins 9 8:34          


Darkwa 2 run (Brown kick)

Drive: 8 plays, 75 yards, 4:22

Drive summary: The Giants got some penalty help on this drive. First they completed a 15-yard pass to Cruz to convert a third and 13. Then they got some help on a borderline illegal contact call flag on third and 2. After Manning completed a pass to Shepard for 18 yards a roughing the pass call was tacked on, moving the ball to the Washington 17. It took Orleans Darkwa two runs from there to get into the end zone.

Giants 21, Redskins 9 4:12          


Jackson 44 pass from Cousins (Hopkins kick)

Drive: 2 plays, 75 yards, 0:32

Drive summary: That was fast. First Cousins launched one to Jackson for 31 yards to the Giants 44. On the next play he went for Jackson in the end zone. The receiver made a grab that withstood a replay review and he got the touchdown.

Giants 21, Redskins 16 3:40       


Third quarter

Crowder 55 pass from Cousins (Hopkins kick)

Drive: 3 plays, 50 yards, 1:17

Drive summary: The Redskins got another quick score. They got the ball at midfield following a punt. A holding call left them with third and 15. Cousins threw a screen to Crowder, who picked his way through the defense, getting help from guard Trent Williams, who took out two defenders. Crowder went down the sideline, cut to the middle and completed the 55-yard touchdown pass.

Redskins 23, Giants 21 9:45       


FG Brown 29

Drive: 9 plays, 64 yards, 3:16

Drive summary: The Giants answered the Redskins touchdown quickly. Manning threw to Cruz on the right sideline and after Greg Toler missed a tackle he scooted for 37 yards to the Washington 38. Then Darkwa scooted for 13, 9 and six yards down to the 10. The drive stalled there and Brown kicked a field goal to put the Giants back on top.

Giants 24, Redskins 23                 


Fourth quarter

FG Hopkins 25

Drive: 15 plays, 68 yards, 6:32

Drive summary: The Giants answered the Redskins touchdown quickly. Manning threw to Cruz on the right sideline and after Greg Toler missed a tackle he scooted for 37 yards to the Washington 38. Then Darkwa scooted for 13, 9 and six yards down to the 10. The drive stalled there and Brown kicked a field goal to put the Giants back on top.

Redskins 26, Giants 23 14:57     


FG Brown 30

Drive: 9 plays, 58 yards, 3:07

Drive summary: The Giants got going with a couple of passes to Beckham, good for 14 and 12 yards. Then Manning went to Vereen for a gain of 16 down to the 20. But Manning to Beckham was short of the line to gain on third down and the Giants retook the lead with a Brown field goal.

Giants 27, Redskins 26 7:53       


FG Hopkins 37

Drive: 10 plays, 56 yards, 6:02

Drive summary: A roughing the passer penalty gave them a first down at their own 36 and then Matt Jones ran for 6, 3, and 10 yards for a first down in Giants territory. The Jones powered for another first down by getting 12 yards to the 24. On third and three at the 17 Jones was stuffed for a loss and Hopkins came in and gave the Redskins the lead.

Redskins 29, Giants 27, 1:51      

MORE REDSKINS: Beckham Jr. gets into fight with kicking net