* 6 PDT
Site--America West Arena, Phoenix.
Radio--KLAC (570 AM).
Records--Sparks 4-8, Phoenix 9-3.
Update--The Sparks want to show their followers they’re not dead yet in the WNBA’s Western Conference race, that the flickering light at tunnel’s end could indeed be a playoff berth. But they can’t get there without some win streaks. And beating Phoenix would be most helpful. That’s today’s daunting task, in the league’s toughest arena, before an expected 15,000. The Mercury is in second place, behind Houston (13-1), and is 5-1 at home. And Cheryl Miller’s team is 1-0 vs. the Sparks, with a 70-60 win at Phoenix June 14. The Mercury is still missing starter Toni Foster, out since the sixth game because of a foot stress fracture. Starting for her has been Aussie Michelle Griffiths, averaging nine points and four rebounds per game.