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Preview: For the first five weeks of the season, the Lynx (13-0) and the Sparks (11-1), the top teams in the WNBA’s Western Conference, orbited each other without meeting. They finally met Tuesday in Los Angeles, when the Lynx pulled out a 72-69 victory on Renee Montgomery’s three-pointer with 2.9 seconds left, extending their league-record season-opening winning streak to 13 games. The Sparks had a chance to tie, but Kristi Tolliver was an inch short — her toe was on the three-point-line — and a split-second late on her shot.

Players to watch: The focus is on Lynx F Maya Moore, who sat out much of the second half of Tuesday’s game because of a thigh bruise. Moore has been listed as day-to-day. With Moore out, the Lynx turned to their bench, which responded with 26 points: 12 for F Natasha Howard (her third game in double figures in her past five), eight for G Jia Perkins and six for Montgomery. Los Angeles’ big two of F/C Candace Parker (15.8 points per game) and F Nneka Ogwumike (16.9) were both held to nine points.

Numbers: The Lynx outrebounded the Sparks 42-29 Tuesday. … Lynx F Rebekah Brunson has hit 30 of her last 30 free throws.

JIM PAULSEN