Sun-Fever Preview

The Associated Press

Kara Lawson believes pulling out close victories will help the Connecticut Sun in the long run.

The Eastern Conference leaders could find themselves in another tightly contested matchup Thursday night.

Seeking the best road start in franchise history, Connecticut tries for a season-high fourth consecutive win overall in the back end of a home-and-home set with the Indiana Fever.

The Sun (9-2) recorded their most lopsided victory Friday, 97-55 over New York, but have since had to sweat out a couple of narrow wins. Two nights after winning 75-73 at Atlanta, Connecticut let an early 12-point lead slip away before defeating Indiana 88-85 in overtime Tuesday.

"Facing pressure situations and being forced to execute against great players, that's what we need right now," said Lawson, who scored a season-high 22 points Tuesday. "We don't need a bunch of 30 or 40-point blowouts.

"We need to have our feet put to the fire in the regular season so, come playoff time, when we go into overtime, we not only have that sense of calm, but we just have great confidence that we can make plays and win the game."

Connecticut is 3-0 on the road for the third time in franchise history but has never won its first four games in opposing buildings.

While the Sun have won six of seven overall, the Fever (5-4) have lost four of five.

Katie Douglas proved to be the lone bright spot for Indiana on Tuesday, scoring 23 points to go with a season-high nine rebounds.

"We just didn't come out the way we'd like to," Douglas said. "Give them credit.

"I'm proud of that we had showed a lot of resiliency, character and perseverance in order to kind of claw back. We definitely got back in the game and gave ourselves a chance to win, but ultimately we'd like to not use a lot of energy and effort to get back in the game."

Returning home could help the Fever get back on track. Indiana has gone 3-1 at Conseco Fieldhouse with the only loss coming 89-81 to Connecticut on June 8.

Tamika Catchings had a season-high 31 points in that game and Douglas scored 23, but they were the only Indiana players in double figures while the Sun had seven.

Connecticut leads the league with 85.5 points per game, and Tina Charles averages 20.2 to rank third in the WNBA. Charles, though, was held to 14 on Tuesday and had a season-low 12 points at Indiana on June 8 but grabbed 14 rebounds.

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