SEATTLE, WA (May 20, 2022)—The Las Vegas Aces (1-0, 1-0) began its title defense with a record-setting 105-64 season-opening victory over the Seattle Storm (0-1, 0-1) on Saturday afternoon in Seattle. Kelsey Plum and Jackie Young scored 23 points each. Rounding out the six double-digit scorers for the Aces were Chelsea Gray (14), A’ja Wilson (13), Candace Parker (12) and Alysha Clark (10). Wilson grabbed 13 rebounds as the game’s lone double-digit rebounder. Jewell Loyd, who was held scoreless in the first period, finished as Seattle’s leading scorer (22).
First Quarter (Las Vegas 18, Seattle 14)
After five knotted scores, a trio of lead changes, and the scoreboard showing 14-14, Plum sunk a pair from the line to put the Aces in front for good with just under a minute to play in the period. Plum hit two more free throws with 1.1 seconds on the clock, and the Aces led 18-14 after the first 10 minutes. Plum and Young had eight points apiece to lead Las Vegas in the quarter.
Second Quarter (Las Vegas 43, Seattle 28)
Including the 4-0 run that closed the first quarter, the Aces run extended to 11-0 early in the second for a 25-14 lead, when Seattle called timeout. The Storm scored out of the break, but the Aces scored 7 in succession to double Seattle’s output, 32-16. In all, the Aces outscored Seattle 25-14 in the period for a 43-28 halftime lead. The Aces featured four players who scored between 7 and 11 points by half––Young (11), Wilson (9), Plum (8) and Parker (7). Loyd had a team-high 10 points for Seattle at halftime.
Third Quarter (Las Vegas 74, Seattle 48)
Young went 2-of-2 from 3-point and scored 10 points in the period as the Aces outscored the Storm 31-20.
Fourth Quarter (Las Vegas 105, Seattle 64)
Winning the fourth quarter 31-16, the Aces were led by Plum’s 12 points (5-7 FGs, 2-2 3pt FGs).
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Las Vegas outscored Seattle 52-34 in the paint and outrebounded Seattle 50-32.
The Aces shot 54.8% from the field, 61.1% from 3-point and 82.4% from the line. By contrast, Seattle made just 32.1% of its field goals, including 23.85 beyond the arc, and only 60.0% from the line.
A’ja Wilson scored in double figures for the 25th consecutive regular season game (13 points).
Kelsey Plum has scored in double figures in 10-straight regular season games (21.6 ppg. during the stretch).
A’ja Wilson recorded the 55th double-double of her career, which is the most in franchise history and second-most in the league since she entered the WNBA in 2018 (13 points, 13 rebounds).
Las Vegas’ 41-point victory over the Storm is the largest margin of victory for the franchise in the series’ history (previous record was 24 points, 90-66, on 9/14/2012).
The 41-point victory also set a league record for opening day margin of victory, which previously was 36 points (Connecticut 101, Las Vegas 65 on 5/20/2018).
The Aces set a league record for most defensive rebounds in a regulation game (44).
Tyler Marsh served as the acting head coach.
Riquna Williams did not dress for the Aces (lower back).
The Aces continue defense of their 2022 WNBA Championship at Los Angeles (1-0, 1-0) on Thursday, May 25. Tip is slated for 7 pm PT, and it will be broadcast on CBS Sports Network.