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Cambage stars in third straight Sparks win

Australia’s Liz Cambage has finished with 19 points to help the Los Angeles Sparks win a third consecutive game and continue their steady climb up the WNBA ladder.

Nneka Ogwumike scored in double figures for the 20th time this season, pouring in 23 points as the hosts held off the Phoenix Mercury 78-75 on Monday night in a Fourth of July thriller.

Ogwumike, the 2012 WNBA No.1 Draft pick, added a game-high nine rebounds while eclipsing 20 points for the ninth time this season.

A clutch three-pointer by Lexie Brown made the difference. With 2:36 left she nailed a shot from well behind the arc to put the Sparks up 74-70, and they held on from there.

Los Angeles are seventh in the standings with a 10-11 record while Phoenix (9-14) remain 10th.

In a game featuring 14 ties and 12 lead changes, Brown scored 14 points while Katie Lou Samuelson and Jordin Canada added 10 apiece. It was the second straight night that the Sparks had five players in double figures.

Skylar Diggins-Smith led the Mercury, who came in having won three of four, with 22 points. Diana Taurasi scored 13 points with Shey Peddy and Sophie Cunningham adding 10 points apiece.

Los Angeles were playing on back-to-back nights and this was their second game of a seven-game homestand.

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