The Indiana Fever, coached by ex-Storm coach Lin Dunn, seeks to win its first title when it hosts defending champion Minnesota in Game 4 of the best-of-five WNBA Finals on Sunday.

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Fever seeks to clinch

its first title Sunday

Tamika Catchings hasn’t forgotten how close she came to clearing a major hurdle in her career.

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Catchings is a seven-time WNBA All-Star, five-time defensive player of the year and the 2011 league most valuable player. She also has won three Olympic gold medals, but the 33-year-old is seeking her first WNBA championship.

That almost changed in 2009. The Fever led Phoenix 2-1 in the best-of-five WNBA Finals and hosted Game 4 at home. Indiana fans were ready to celebrate, but the Mercury beat the Fever 90-77, took the series back to Phoenix and won the title at home in Game 5.

Indiana is again on the cusp of a title after beating defending champion Minnesota 76-59 Friday in Game 3 of the Finals to take a 2-1 series lead. Game 4 is Sunday.

Once again, the Fever can clinch the title at home. This time, Catchings will take a different approach.

“I felt like we celebrated too much after Game 3 in 2009 and we came out in Game 4 and had an opportunity and we let it slip away,” she said.

Indiana is coached by Lin Dunn, a former Storm coach.


Locals play key roles

Players with local ties were prominent in exhibition-game victories.

Former Sonic Jeff Green scored 25 points and Jason Terry, a graduate of Franklin High School in Seattle, added 22 as Boston beat New York 109-98 in Albany, N.Y.

Marvin Williams of Bremerton contributed 18 points, eight rebounds and four steals to lead host Utah to a 99-91 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers.

Ex-Seattle Prep player Martell Webster had 17 points as Washington won 102-94 at Milwaukee.

Rodney Stuckey, a standout for Eastern Washington and Kentwood High in Covington, scored a game-high 16 points as the host Detroit Pistons beat Charlotte 85-80.

Ex-Sonic Rashard Lewis scored 11 of his 15 points in the fourth quarter and the Miami Heat beat visiting San Antonio 104-101.


Icon Allais dies at 100

Emile Allais, a champion French skier who helped shape his sport by developing and popularizing a new style in the 1930s — keeping skis parallel rather than angled inward — as well as by coaching Olympic teams and designing ski equipment, died Wednesday in Sallanches, in the French Alps. He was 100.

Jean-Claude Killy, the French skier who dominated the sport in the late 1960s, hailed Allais as “the father of modern skiing.”


Missy Franklin, a senior at Regis Jesuit High in Aurora, Colo., who won four gold medals at this year’s London Olympics, made an oral commitment to swim for California next season.

Danny Garcia stopped Erik Morales at 1:23 of the fourth round to retain his WBC and WBA super-lightweight boxing titles at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center in New York. Garcia is 25-0; Morales is 52-9.

• American Venus Williams reached her first tennis final in almost 2 ½ years after defeating Andrea Petkovic of Germany 5-7, 6-4, 6-4 at the Luxembourg Open.

Williams, hampered for two seasons by injuries and an autoimmune disease, will play Monica Niculescu of Romania in the final Sunday.

Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark and Samantha Stosur of Australia, who each needed three sets to advance, will meet in Sunday’s Kremlin Cup final in Moscow.

Andreas Seppi of Italy will play Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil for the men’s title.

Frankel, considered one of the greatest horses of all time in Europe, finished his racing career unbeaten by winning the Group I Champions Stakes at Ascot in England for a 14th straight victory.

Frankel was sent off at 2-11 odds in front of a crowd of 32,000 that included Queen Elizabeth II. The 4-year-old colt ran 1 ¼ miles on soft turf in 2 minutes, 10.22 seconds and beat 2011 winner Cirrus Des Aigles by 1 ¾ lengths.

Some analysts predict Frankel — named after American Bobby Frankel, a Hall of Fame trainer who died in 2009 — could earn owner Prince Khalid bin Abdullah more than $160 million at stud.

Tom Queally rode Frankel, who is trained by Sir Henry Cecil.

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