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Aces overcome slow start, beat Mystics

A’ja Wilson scored 20 points, Dearica Hamby finished with 12 points and 13 rebounds, and the Las Vegas Aces shook off a slow start Wednesday to beat the Washington Mystics, 83-77, in Bradenton, Fla.

Las Vegas (3-2) scored just two points through the game’s first 5:43. The Aces’ outstanding defense buoyed them until the offense caught up.

Washington (3-2) shot just 41.1 percent from the floor and 30.8 percent from behind the 3-point line. Las Vegas capitalized on the misses, outrebounding the Mystics 38-30.

Balanced scoring complemented Las Vegas’ defense and work on the glass. Wilson led five Aces in double-figures, while Kyla McBride chipped in 14 points and Angel McCoughtry added 13.

Hamby recorded her double-double off the bench, and Danielle Robinson also came off the bench to score 20.

Washington, meanwhile, got just nine points from its bench. Emma Meesseman shouldered much of the scoring load with 24 points.

She was the only Mystic to make multiple 3-pointers, making 3 of 7 attempts.

Myisha Hines-Allen also had a double-double for Washington with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Leilani Mitchell scored 11 points.

The Washington starting five did its part in what was a back-and-forth contest for the entirety after the opening minutes. Las Vegas led for all but 24 seconds in the fourth quarter, but the Aces’ led never exceeded seven points until the final 20 seconds.

Washington had possession and an opportunity to pull within a basket with about a minute remaining, but a Hamby steal helped seal the win for Las Vegas.

A key to the Aces’ defensive showing was locking down Mystics guard Aerial Powers, who came into Wednesday’s matchup averaging a career-high 18 points per game on 52.1 percent shooting.

Las Vegas limited Powers to just six points on 2-for-9 shooting.

–Field Level Media

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