Thanks to a 24 point effort from Kara Lawson, the Mystics managed to hold on to a 89-82 victory over the Connecticut Sun. Adding to the momentum of this two game winning streak, the Mystics head to Tulsa with an 8-6 record before All-Star weekend.
The Mystics started off on FIRE with a 14-4 with Lawson scoring 11 points in the first 4:46 of the game. Alex Bentley and Shekinna Stricklen kept the Sun in contention by scoring all 15 of their first quarter points to keep the deficit to seven.
In the second quarter, the Sun bounced back with a vengance as they went on a 10-4 run to cut a double-digit deficit to one with 6:14 left in the quarter. The play of the game happened in the second quarter with a behind-the-back pass from Natasha Cloud to Kara Lawson for the and-one layup. Both teams were going score-for-score until the Sun gained the first lead of the game (38-35). They took that lead with 1:57 left before the half, the Sun went on to hold a 41-39 lead at the break.
As the second half began, both teams were going trading baskets until the Mystics broke the game open with a little spurt. Washington’s mini-run would give them a 54-48 lead with a little under five minutes remaining in the quarter.
Throughout the third period, there were some questionable fouls called that helped the Sun trim the deficit on the scoreboard. Connecticut went on an 11-5 run to end the period, including a buzzer beater from Kelsey Bone to tie the score at 59.
In the fourth quarter, Cloud showed great maturity for a first year players as she ran the tempo and shared the ball, dishing it to Stefanie Dolson and LaToya Sanders for key scores. The game was tied at 74 with 4:06 to go and from there the Mystics pulled away with great defense. They also showed an ability to get to the free throw line down the stretch.
Washington has one more game before the All-Star Break, they visit Odyssey Simms and the Tulsa Shock Tuesday for a matinee game at 12:30 pm EST. There was news today stating that the Shock will be moving to the Dallas/Ft. Worth area next season.
My take on the game is that the Mystics can beat almost any team in a multitude of styles from good defense, high octane offense, excellent ball movement or even hustling for second chance opportunities.
The star of the game for me was Natasha Cloud. Although her stat sheet wasn’t that impressive (seven points, two steals, three assists and four rebounds) she always made the pivotal play or was the ignition to some of the Mystics runs.
The Mystics definitely have the potential to do damage in the WNBA, there goal now is to maintain this level of consistency for the rest of the season.