Las Vegas, Nevada (Aug. 11, 2023)—Behind a career-high 40 points from A’ja Wilson, the Las Vegas Aces (26-3) started their five-game home stand with a bang, pulling away from the Washington Mystics (13-16) in the second half for a 113-89 win on Friday night, and stretching their franchise-record home winning streak to 19 games. Three Aces posted double-doubles: Wilson (40 points, 12 rebounds), Kelsey Plum (19 points, 10 assists) and Chelsea Gray (19 points, 10 assists). Natasha Cloud led five Washington double-digit scorers with 21 points.
First Quarter Highlights (Las Vegas 30, Washington 21)
After a slow start with Las Vegas and Washington locked in a 7-7 tie at 6:46 to go, Wilson spearheaded an offensive explosion for the Aces, netting 11 of Las Vegas’ next 23 points. Wilson finished with 15 points in the opening frame, Young netted 9 and Gray 6. Cloud hit a pair of 3s for a high of 6 for the Mystics.
Second Quarter Highlights (Las Vegas 57, Washington 48)
Washington kept Las Vegas on its toes as its offense slowly chipped away at the Aces’ lead, and from 5:44 to 0:22, Las Vegas’ lead was no more than 6 points. The Mystics came within 2 points twice at 3:27 (44-42) and 2:38 (46-44). Las Vegas did not surrender the lead thanks to Wilson’s 9 points and Plum’s 8 in the quarter. The Aces shot 58.8 percent from the floor and were perfect from deep (3-3 3Pt FGs). The Mystics were led by Tiana Hawkins’ 10 points, and Washington was 50 percent from the field. Las Vegas went 8 of 8 from the line in the 1st quarter, and was perfect from the charity stripe (11-11 FTs) at halftime.
Third Quarter Highlights (Las Vegas 88, Washington 74)
A 7-0 Mystics run tied the contest at 68 with 4:24 remaining. After a 3-pointer from Young and a basket by the Mystics, the Aces held a slim 71-70 margin. However, a Young 3-pointer at 3:25 propelled the Aces to a 14-1 run that ended with 53 seconds on the clock and an 85-71 Aces lead. That prompted a Mystics timeout. Las Vegas was 61.1 percent (11-18) from the floor and 4 of 5 from 3-point range. Washington was 42.9 percent (9-21) from the floor and 4-4 from deep. Wilson’s 10 points led the Aces, while Sykes sat atop the Mystics’ score sheet with 8.
Fourth Quarter Highlights (Las Vegas 113, Washington 89)
After the Mystics pulled within 10 points, 88-78 at 8:28, the Aces put the pedal to the metal and jumped out to a 20-point lead, 101-81, with 4 minutes to play. From there, Vegas went on a 12-3 run for its largest lead of the night (27 points) before the Mystics hit a 3 with 3 seconds to play to draw the game to its 113-89 conclusion. Although Wilson played just 4:31 and was subbed out with 2:41 left, she led the Aces with 6 points. Cloud put up 5 for Washington.
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The Aces finished the contest shooting 54.5% from the floor (42-77 FGs) and an even 50% from deep (14-28 3FGs). Las Vegas held Washington to 43% from the field (34-79 FGs) and 38.7% from 3-point range (12-31 3FGs).
The Aces sank 15 of 16 (.938) from the line, while the Mystics went 9 of 11 (.818)
The Aces had 7 turnovers, and the Mystics coughed up 12. The Aces scored 20 off the Mystics’ miscues, while the Mystics scored only 8.
The Aces scored 46 in the paint, Washington 36.
The Aces are averaging a league-high 94.2 ppg and posting league-bests of of 49.9 percent shooting from the field, 39.1 from 3-point, 83.2 percent from the line and a 114.7 offensive efficiency and 97.4 defensive efficiency rating.
Jackie Young (25 years, 329 days) officially holds the league mark for wins through one’s 26th birthday with 113, passing Mwadi Mabika.
Wilson’s 40 points is a new career high (39 points, OT vs. Indiana, June 29, 2019) and tied the franchise scoring record (Plum, at Minnesota, July 9, 2023). She also broke her own WNBA record for most points scored in a game without hitting a 3-pointer.
Wilson scored a career-high 24 points in the first half (23, at Los Angeles, July 12 2023).
Plum recorded her 4th career point-assist double-double with 19 and 10, her first of the season. The 10 assists marked a season high.
Gray recorded her 11th career point-assist double-double with 19 points and 10 assists, and her 15th career double-figure assist game.
A’ja Wilson’s 17 made field goals are the second most in a game in WNBA history and the most in franchise history (18, Lauren Jackson, Seattle at Washington, July 24, 2007). Her 17 made two-pointers tied Lauren Jackson’s WNBA record for most made twos in a game (17, Lauren Jackson, Seattle vs. Los Angeles, August 6, 2003).
Wilson grabbed 12 rebounds to pass Margo Dydek (1,530) for 2nd place on the franchise’s career rebounds chart, and she now has 1,536.
The Aces have scored 90+ points in all but 7 games this season and 100+ points 8 times.
The Aces have four games remaining in their home stretch spanning from Aug. 11-19, with Atlanta next (Aug. 13), followed by back-to-back contests against New York in the Commissioner’s Cup championship game (Aug. 15) and a regular season meeting (Aug. 17), before the final in the season series against Los Angeles (Aug. 19).