No player on the Connecticut Sun is more familiar with foreign national anthems than Kara Lawson, the veteran guard and 2008 U.S.Olympic gold medalist.
On Friday, Lawson heard the anthem of the
Polish national team -- played by a polka band
dressed in lederhosen and fake pigtails--before
the Sun's second exhibition game at the Mohegan
"What was funny about that was Renee
[Montgomery] and Kelsey [Griffin] were standing
beside me andwere putting their hands over
their hearts," Lawson said. "I'm thinking to
myself, 'That's not our country's [anthem].' "
Lawson (5 of 11) scored all of her 14 points
among Connecticut's first 27 over the first 6:16 to
lead the Sun to their 89-46 victory.
"The first quarter was good," Lawson said.
"The worst part of it was that it ended."
With UConn assistant coach Marisa Moseley
sitting behind the Sun bench, rookie center
Tina Charles (6 for 9) added15 points, giving her
36 in 49 minutes in the two preseason games.
Free agent rookie guard May Kotsopoulos
of Vermont, the
leading scorer in the
America East last
season, also scored 15
points (3 of 5 from
three) for the Sun.
"I'm lucky to be
still here, but also
very excited," she
said. "People in Vermont
ask me when
I'm coming home. I
don't know. It could
be tomorrow. It could
be in a few days."
The Sun end the
Tuesday morning at
10:30 against the New
York Liberty at Madison Square Garden.
Sun coach MikeThibault's biggest concern so
far, aside from his three missing starters --
Sandrine Gruda, Anete Jekabsone and Asjha
Jones--had been slow starts in the scrimmages
and previous exhibition game.
For instance, in Tuesday's game against
Atlanta, the Sun trailed 11-0 before getting on
track for an 86-79 victory.
"Starting quickly was definitely something
we talked about as starters," Lawson said. "We
wanted to grab the lead and set the tone
The Sun scored the first 10 points, led 37-15
after one quarter and extended it to 52-18 at
Most of the mystery about the construction of
the team is over.
Jekabsone will practice for the first time with
the team on Sunday. Jones is slowing working
her way back from a sore Achilles', even though
it's unlikely she'll be ready for next Saturday's
opener against Chicago. And Gruda will eventually
report, likely in the first week of June.
Until Jones is ready, the Sun will go with 10
players since they'd have to cut someone to
replace her on the active roster. And nine of
those spots are set. The 10th likely will go to one
of two free agent guards, Ivy League player of
the year Judie Lomax of Columbia or Kotsopoulos,
unless Thibault signs a veteran who's
cut by another team.
SUN 89, POLAND 46