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Starzz 78, Mystics 77

June 14, 1998

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) _ Kim Williams had five points and a key steal in the final 43 seconds as the Utah Starzz came from behind to beat the Washington Mystics 78-77 Saturday night.

The Starzz erased a six-point Washington lead with 1:13 to play. Utah took the lead on Williams’ 10-foot leaner with nine seconds left, and Elena Baranova stripped the ball from the Mystics’ Nikki McCray with two seconds to play.

The Mystics were denied their first win in franchise history, while the Starzz won for the first time this season. McCray led Washington with 26 points, while Alessandra Santos de Oliviera had 19 points and 18 rebounds.

With 43 seconds left and the Starzz down 77-73, Utah’s Tammi Reiss stole the ball from McCray and fed Williams, who hit a layup and the ensuing free throw to cut Washington’s lead to a point. Williams then stole a Washington pass and hit the jumper that put Utah ahead.

United States national team star McCray, who defected from the ABL last year, has scored 45 points in her first two WNBA games. She scored 19 points and hit all three of her 3-point attempts in the first half. She made nine turnovers in the game, however.

Reiss scored 17 points for Utah, while Baranova had 17 points and 11 rebounds. Utah’s 7-foot-2 center Margo Dydek spent her second straight game in foul trouble. She had seven points and two blocks.

Chicago Bulls Dickey Simpkins and Scott Burrell were in the crowd, as were the Utah Jazz’s Antoine Carr and Chris Morris. The Bulls arrived in Utah Saturday afternoon for Sunday’s Game 6 of the NBA Finals.

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