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Elena Delle Donne, Mystics charge past Lynx

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

Elena Delle Donne scored 17 of her 21 points in the first half as the Washington Mystics defeated the visiting Minnesota Lynx 70-57 on Sunday afternoon.

Ariel Atkins had 15 points and reserve Shatori Walker-Kimbrough posted 11 points for the Mystics (16-11), who were playing just their third game since the All-Star break. They went 1-1 on a West Coast swing before returning home.

Kayla McBride racked up 16 points and Aerial Powers had 11 points for the Lynx, who lost for the second time in their last six games. Sylvia Fowles added nine points and 12 rebounds.

Delle Donne also grabbed a team-best 10 rebounds for a double-double. She, Atkins and Walker-Kimbrough each made two 3-pointers for the Mystics, who were 7-for-25 from long range. Minnesota went 4-for-20 from the arc, including 1-for-8 in the first half.

The Lynx were hurt by 16 turnovers compared to eight charged to Washington, which was efficient at the free-throw line by going 11-for-12. The turnover margin negated some of the impact of Minnesota’s 45-38 rebounding advantage.

The Lynx led early in the second quarter before a big Mystics surge late in the first half resulted in a 37-28 Washington lead at the break.

After Fowles posted the first points of the second half with a pair of free throws, the Mystics responded with a 12-0 run. The margin ballooned to 49-30 by the time Natasha Cloud connected on a jumper.

The Lynx scored the next eight points but didn’t make another sustained charge. Minnesota managed only seven points in the game’s final six minutes.

Minnesota, which had scored 80 or more points in each of its last 11 games, shot 33.3 percent (22-for-66) from the field, though Washington wasn’t much better at 37.7 percent (26-for-69). The Mystics held a 21-14 edge in bench scoring.

The Lynx played their third game in four days and fourth game in six days.

–Field Level Media