Connecticut Sun coach Mike Thibault and Washington Mystics coach Trudi Lacey are hoping their teams can learn from their latest defeats.
The Sun, though, might have a better chance of earning a win while working on their development Sunday as the Mystics visit Mohegan Sun Arena.Besides being off to a much better start than Washington, Connecticut (3-1) appears to have a big edge because it's playing at home. Not only have the Mystics (1-3) lost 10 consecutive road games overall, they are 5-23 all-time in Connecticut and have dropped six straight there dating to June 6, 2009.The Sun were riding an eight-game home win streak in the regular season before losing 85-72 to unbeaten Minnesota on Friday. Connecticut was denied the best start in franchise history, getting outscored 30-16 and outrebounded 12-4 in the fourth quarter by the defending WNBA champions."I just thought what we saw in the fourth quarter was a difference in the maturity level of the two teams right now," Thibault said. "We're close, but we're not quite there yet."Tina Charles continued her strong start to the season with 20 points and 12 rebounds. The future U.S. Olympian is currently among the league leaders in scoring (20.5 points per game) and rebounding (11.0 rpg)."We didn't get Tina enough shots down the stretch," Thibault said. "You have to credit Minnesota a little bit for that because they front and backed her a little bit and made it tough to get it in, but we need to be a little more patient about it, too."The Mystics, meanwhile, were dealt a second consecutive defeat Friday, falling 65-63 to Chicago on a late layup. Washington blew a five-point lead in the final 46 seconds."Games in this league can come down to the last two or three possessions. We have to make plays in order to win," Lacey said. "We'll learn from this. We'll get better, come back strong and be all right."The Mystics suffered a four-game sweep in last season's series with the Sun. Charles averaged 21.0 points and 9.5 rebounds while teammate Renee Montgomery added 15.0 points per matchup.The most decisive meeting was the most recent one, 79-48 in Washington on Sept. 4. Charles had 24 points and 15 boards to lead the way for Connecticut, which held the Mystics to 26.9 percent shooting and their lowest point total in six years.Crystal Langhorne fared the best versus the Sun in 2011 among Mystics players who appeared in at least two matchups, averaging 13.0 points.