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Aces blitz Sparks in second half en route to blowout

Sportsnaut
Sep 7, 2018; Seattle, WA, USA; The WNBA logo on a ball during the fourth quarter of game one of the WNBA finals between the Seattle Storm and the Washington Mystics at KeyArena. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports

Kelsey Plum scored 29 points and A’ja Wilson added 24, and the Las Vegas Aces used a stifling late-game run to down the visiting Los Angeles Sparks 84-66 on Saturday.

Las Vegas (20-8) won its fifth decision in the last six outings and closed its three-game homestand on a high before embarking on a six-game road swing that begins with Tuesday’s Commissioner’s Cup Championship at Chicago.

The Aces fell behind the Sparks, 53-46, midway through the third quarter when Chennedy Carter scored on back-to-back possessions — part of her team-high 15 points off the bench.

However, Las Vegas held Los Angeles scoreless for the next 5:48 of game time, kick-starting a 38-13 run that lasted the duration of the game.

Plum and Wilson accounted for the first 13 points in the decisive deluge, including 11 to close out the third quarter and give the Aces the lead heading into the fourth.

In the final period, Wilson scored seven straight Las Vegas points in a stretch lasting 1:50, bookended with 3-pointers from Plum and Riquna Williams. The Aces quickly extended a two-point lead to 14, then pushed the advantage to as many as 20 as the period wore on.

Las Vegas forced Los Angeles into 14 turnovers while committing just nine on the other end. The Aces held the Sparks to 40.7 percent shooting from the floor — including 16.7 percent from 3-point range (2 of 12).

The Aces shot 10-of-27 from deep.

Nneka Ogwumike was held to 10 points, nine fewer than her season average, on 4-of-9 shooting. That set the tone as the 66 points Las Vegas allowed marked its lowest yield of the season.

Los Angeles (12-15), meanwhile, failed to score more than 69 points for a third time in six games — all three resulting in losses. Jordin Canada and Liz Cambage each scored 11 points in the loss, while Katie Lou Samuelson added 10.

–Field Level Media