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updated: 7/28/2011 11:16 PM

Sky hand Shock 11th straight loss

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  • Sylvia Fowles, left, shoots in front of Tulsa Shock center Abi Olajuwon in the third quarter Thursday in Tulsa, Okla. Chicago won 64-55.

      Sylvia Fowles, left, shoots in front of Tulsa Shock center Abi Olajuwon in the third quarter Thursday in Tulsa, Okla. Chicago won 64-55.
    Associated Press

 
Associated Press

TULSA, Okla. -- For a year, Sylvia Fowles played big sister and mentor to Abi Olajuwon.

They faced off again Thursday night, with Fowles and the Chicago Sky staving off a late surge to hand the Tulsa Shock their 11th straight loss with a 64-55 victory.

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"It's always fun going against Abi," Fowles said. "She's going to make you work for everything you get. Abi and I used to go at it pretty good, only because I want the best for her. I felt like she always got pampered and wanted things easy, so I would play the sister from hell, making her life a little miserable.

"She's growing. You can see parts of her game getting better. She soaks up everything you tell her."

After Olajuwon had three years of being knocked around by Oklahoma teammate Courtney Paris in practice, it was Fowles' turn to school the former Sooner in Olajuwon's rookie season in 2010.

Fowles joked, "Courtney's just big. I've got talent. Believe it or not, Abi used to push me around a lot in practice. I would get mad. She made me work and that always makes you better as a big girl."

Their friendship actually pre-dates Olajuwon's college days.

"She's been my big sister and mentor since high school," Olajuwon said. "It's an honor to have the opportunity to learn from one of the best post players in the country.

"It's definitely different than going against Courtney. It was a great experience and I know she's always going to go hard on me."

Fowles finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds, including a layup in traffic at the 1:40 mark that ended the Shock's comeback bid.

Tulsa (1-16) trailed by five at halftime but rallied with an 11-1 run in the third quarter to take a 48-46 lead in the final minute of the period. But the Shock fell apart in the fourth, scoring just seven points.

Tiffany Jackson had 11 rebounds, tying a WNBA record with eight offensive boards.

Tulsa guard Ivory Latta scored 20 points in just her second game back since battling a staph infection.

Chicago coach Pokey Chatman praised the play of rookie Courtney Vandersloot, who finished with 12 points and no turnovers.

"That was probably her best game of late, well maybe her best game overall," Chatman said. "All I know is she had no turnovers and that's big. She didn't get the chance to be indoctrined the league. We've had to throw her out there with all her injuries."

Chatman said the win was big because of the team's struggles on the road, picking up just their second road win of the season.

"We've struggled on the road this year," she said. "We've had too many turnovers this year. Tonight, we did a better job of taking care of the ball.

"It wasn't a pretty game. Everyone was playing hard. It became ugly but when it got down to it we took care of business."

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant sat courtside, saying he was "about 50-50" on playing overseas if the NBA lockout lasted by may have to think about it.

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