LOS ANGELES -- Sylvia Fowles had 21 points and nine rebounds, Maya Moore scored 12 of her 20 points in the fourth quarter and the Minnesota Lynx beat the Los Angeles Sparks 77-74 on Tuesday night for sole possession of first place in the Western Conference.Fowles and Moore combined to score Minnesotas first 18 points of the fourth.Moore hit a 3-pointer in transition to extend Minnesotas lead to 61-54. She knocked down another 3 with the shot clock winding down and after a Los Angeles miss, Moore made a fast-break layup for a 68-58 lead with 3:53 left.Minnesota was up by 12 with 1:47 left but Los Angeles charged back and Chelsea Gray hit a 3-pointer from the corner with 2.1 seconds left to pull the Sparks to 76-74. With a second left, Lindsay Whalen made the first free throw and intentionally missed the second to run out the clock.Whalen finished with 10 points and Rebekkah Brunson had 11 rebounds for Minnesota (25-5), the top-ranked team in the AP power poll. The Lynx earned a double bye to the semifinals of the WNBA playoffs.Gray scored a career-high 20 points and Nneka Ogwumike had 19 points and eight rebounds for second-ranked Los Angeles (24-6). Candace Parker added 10 points, eight rebounds and seven assists.The Sparks didnt make their first basket of the third quarter until the 3:21 mark but only trailed 54-50 entering the fourth after closing on a 10-4 run. Cheap Shoes Uk Sale . 4 Villanova with a 96-68 drubbing on Monday. Wragge hit 9-of-14 from behind the arc, matching Kyle Korvers school record for 3-pointers in a game set in 2003, as Creighton (16-3, 6-1 Big East broke a conference record with 21 treys in the rout. Cheap Shoes Uk Online . John Tavares, Thomas Vanek and Kyle Okposo were also being counted on to slow down sizzling Rangers forward Rick Nash. That plan didnt go so well early. http://www.cheapukshoes.com/ . Galatasaray said in a statement on its website Monday that Mancini signed a three-year contract and will be paid 3.5 million euros for the upcoming season, with his salary upped to 4. Discount Shoes Online Uk . 10 Texas Rangers jersey for one last time. Young formally announced his retirement Friday after returning to Rangers Ballpark, his baseball home for all but the last of his 13 major league seasons. Cheap Shoes Clearance Uk . Lack made 20 saves for his third shutout of the season as the Canucks blanked the St. Louis Blues 1-0 in the first post-Olympic game for both teams night. There was a valuable lesson contained within a $411,188.06 payout in Gulfstream Parks Rainbow Pick 6 Jackpot on Aug. 6.The handicapping genius who was the only one to correctly select all six winners made excellent use of a $2,160 bankroll, electing to use 10 of the 11 horses in one of the races.While its hardly unusual for a Pick 6 player to wheel a race (using all of the horses in that race) or include virtually all of the horses, what stood out here was the horse left off the ticket was the favorite in the race.And thats why they call it gambling.By taking a stand against the favorite -- who finished fifth -- that handicapper wound up having the $59.40 winner on that ticket and was ultimately rewarded with a life-changing payoff.While cashing a Pick 6 ticket would be a dream come true for a modest player, anyone can benefit from the wagering strategy and confidence that went into that huge payday at Gulfstream Park.As much as some handicappers like to focus their wagers on favorites so that they can cash a winning ticket more often, these chalk players are actually working against the odds. Even if favorites win 33 percent of the time, that means they lose 67 percent of the time.Its those numbers that illustrate why a handicapper would always be wise to exploit a vulnerable favorite. Youre chasing bigger payoffs, and, yes, about 67 percent of the time it makes sense to bet against the chalk.While a handicapper should always strive to pick winners, sometimes it can work out just as well when you find a race where you do not like the favorite. By spreading your wagers a little more than usual in that race, you just might cash a ticket that puts you in the black for the rest of the day.And if youre worried that the horse everyone but you seems to like will beat you, remember, about 67 percent of the time that horse will lose. So go ahead, take a chance.In case you have forgotten already, thats why they call it gambling.To help in understanding when it makes sense to latch on to a favorite or avoid it like a cold, lets take a look at whats happening at the Graveyard of Favorites, Saratoga Race Course -- which is actually embracing the chalk in a manner more befitting Aqueducts inner-track meet.From July 22 through Aug. 12, there have been 187 races at the Spa -- not including steeplechase events. In those races, the betting favorite has prevailed in 72 of them, which amounts to a very respectable rate of 38.5 percent.With so many favorites crossing the finish line first, it would seem like nirvana for chalk players. But if they tried to stretch their luck into the exotics, they are no doubt struggling.While betting the two favorites in an exaacta might seem quite sensible while youre analyzing past performances, in reality betting on the two favorites in a race, in the long run, accounts for low payoffs and a low winning percentage.ddddddddddddAs much as the second choice has indeed wound up second behind the favorite more often than any other option in the wagering, your chances of cashing on the chalk running 1-2 are less than you might think.Of those 72 wins by favorites at Saratoga, on 25 occasions the second choice finished second. That might sound good in theory, but it averages out to a chalk exacta happening 13.7 percent of the time -- which is a rather low mark considering that 11 of those exactas paid $10.80 or less.Interestingly, playing the second choice over the favorite in the exacta has generated much weaker results as it has happened just nine times, or 4.8% of the time. Box the two favorites and youre winning at a rate of just 18.2% (34 of 187) -- which means youre losing 81.8% of the time.What can help in putting those numbers to work for you is an understanding of when the favorite is more likely to shine or stub its toe.In breaking those numbers down by the categories of races, turf claiming races have been a weak area for favorites.So far favorites have been victorious in just 22.7 percent of turf claimers (5 of 22 races) and have been first or second in 10 of the 22 races (45.5%).In contrast, the chalk has thrived in dirt claimers. Favorites have won 17 of 35 (48.5%) main-track claiming races and have been first or second in 25 of those 35 races for a stellar mark of 71.4%.Favorites have also excelled in dirt stakes, where they have won 7 of 15 races (46.6%) and been first or second 12 of 15 times (75%), and turf stakes, where favorites have won 6 of 9 races (66.6%) with no runner-up finishes.If youre looking for an opportunity to cast a thumbs down on a favorite, the best spots have been maiden special weight races on dirt (1 for 5, 20%), maiden special weight races for New York state-breds on dirt (0 for 4), starter allowance races on turf (0 for 4) and allowance races on turf (4 of 14, 28.5%).Keep all of those numbers in mind the next time you stumble across a favorite that you dont like. Rather than follow the pack and reluctantly back it, by sticking to your first instincts, youll actually have the percentages on your side and you could be staring at your big payoff of the day.Yes, taking a gamble can certainly have its rewards, even if youre not playing the Pick 6.For more stories like this check out Americas Best Racing. ' ' '