LAS VEGAS (June 26, 2023)—Chelsea Gray scored 8 points and assisted on a Kelsey Plum 3-pointer, and the Aces’ defense forced the Fever to miss their final 6 shots of the game, as the Aces (13-1) outscored Indiana 11-2 to close out an 88-80 victory Monday night at Michelob ULTRA Arena. Gray finished the night with a season-high 25 points, A’ja Wilson had 24 points and 10 rebounds, Jackie Young scored 16 and Candace Parker hauled in 12 boards. Aliyah Boston and Erica Wheeler scored 20 apiece for Indiana.
Not only did the Aces claim their 13th win on the season, but they are also now tied for 2nd among all-time WNBA teams for victories prior to a second loss. The 2016 Sparks and 1998 Comets were 20-1 to start their seasons.
First Quarter (Indiana 23, Las Vegas 20)
The Fever went up by as many as 6 points in the first quarter, 14-8, but the Aces fought back and took their first lead of the game on a Wilson steal and bucket to cap a 7-0 run that put the Aces in front 15-14. The Aces shot just 31.6% from the field, while the Fever finished the quarter shooting 43.5% and Indiana collected 7 points off 4 Aces turnovers. Wilson (11) and Young (9) were the Aces lone scorers in the period and Kelsey Mitchell scored 12 for Indiana.
Second Quarter (Indiana 49, Las Vegas 48)
With 8 lead changes and 7 knotted scores, neither team managed more than a 4-point lead throughout the second quarter. The Aces shooting improved to 69.2% in the second to bump up to 46.9% for the half, and the Fever remained steady at 42.1% on the quarter and 42.9% in the half. The Aces held a 10-4 advantage on the boards, but coughed up the ball 7 times, which resulted in 9 points for the Fever. Wilson again led the Aces in the quarter with 11 points on a perfect 4 of 4 from the field and Gray scored 10.
Third Quarter (Las Vegas 69, Indiana 64)
After 6 lead changes and 4 ties, a Plum jumper started an 8-2 run that gave Las Vegas its largest lead of the game to that point, 69-63. Las Vegas held Indiana to 33.3% shooting from the floor and 0 of 4 from 3-point land, while its offense hit 41.2% of its field goals. Plum scored 7 for the Aces and Boston had 10 for Indiana.
Fourth Quarter (Las Vegas 88, Indiana 80)
The fourth quarter remained close throughout and with 2:26 to play the Fever went ahead 78-77. That’s when Gray and the Aces defense went to work. Gray hit back-to-back jumpers and assisted on a Plum 3 with just over a minute to play. Gray scored her next four points from the line for the Aces final points.
It has been 1,200 days since Breonna Taylor was murdered. In 2022, three officers were federally charged with conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and civil rights violations. One of the officers later pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy, marking the first conviction in the case.
The ACLU is currently tracking 491 anti-LGBTQ+ bills in the United States.
The Aces shot 40.9% from the field and held the Fever to 35.9%.
Las Vegas made 27 of 28 from the line (.964), while Indiana was 18 of 21 (85.7%).
The teams were matched evenly on the boards, 39-all, with Las Vegas earning a 10-5 edge in team rebounds.
The Aces, who were scoring a league-high 40.5 points in the paint, were held to 28 in the paint, while Indiana scored 40.
In all there were 19 lead changes and 12 knotted scores.
With 22 points in the first half, Wilson tied her personal record done two other times, last at Los Angeles on June 11, 2022.
The Aces current 12-game home winning streak is tied for the longest in franchise history.
The streak of 12 straight home wins has been accomplished 21 times in WNBA history, and the record is 28 by the Sparks in 2000-02.
The Aces are averaging 92.8 points per game, which would be the highest scoring average in franchise history should they maintain it. Only the 2010 (93.9 ppg.) and 2009 (92.8 ppg.) Phoenix Mercury have averaged that or more in a season.
Wilson notched the 63nd double-double of her career and the 9th of the season.
Las Vegas is now outscoring opponents by 15.4 points on the year which is the largest scoring differential through 14 games in WNBA history.
The win marked the 11th straight Aces victory over Indiana Fever, which includes a 3-game sweep in 2023 and dates to the 2020 bubble season.
With their win, the Aces moved into a tie for No. 2 in league history for victories before a 2nd loss on the season.
W-L Season Team
20-1 2016 Los Angeles Sparks
20-1 1998 Houston Comets
13-1 2017 Minnesota Lynx
13-1 2016 Minnesota Lynx
13-1 2012 Minnesota Lynx
13-1 2023 Las Vegas Aces
The Aces have scored 90+ points in all but 3 games this season.
Riquna Williams did not dress for the Aces (lower back).
The Aces have three games remaining in their five-game homestand from June 29-July 5, starting with the No. 3 New York Liberty (9-3) on June 29, No. 2 Connecticut Sun (12-3) on July 1 and No. 6 Dallas Wings (6-8) on July 5.
The game against New York will mark their first official meetings this season. However, it’s not the first time they will have gone toe-to-toe as the Liberty fell 84-77 to the Aces in Las Vegas in the Aces’ lone preseason contest of the year on May 13. The home side jumped out to a double-digit lead after one quarter, and a 20-point advantage at the half, en route to the victory. Plum led all scorers with 22 points.
The Liberty are ranked second in the league in scoring (87.9 ppg.) and rebounding (37.5), and tops in assists (24.0) per game. Led by Breanna Stewart’s 22.5 ppg. and 10.4 rpg., the Liberty are further bolstered by 17.1 ppg., 5.9 rpg. and 4.4 apg. from Sabrina Ionescu and Courtney Vandersloot’s 10.8 ppg. and league-leading 8.6 apg.