LAS VEGAS — The Las Vegas Aces improve to 23-2 on the season after defeating the Dallas Wings, 104-91.
After a losing to the Wings in their last matchup the Aces came out looking for revenge. Kelsey Plum led the Aces with 28 points, Chelsea Gray had 27 points, A’ja Wilson added 22 points and Alysha Clark had 12.
Teaira McCowan led the Wings with 25 points and 15 rebounds, followed by Satou Sabally with 19 points, Arike Ogunbowale added 14 points.
The Aces got off to a fast start leading by as many as 15 in the first quarter shooting 68 percent from the field. A’ja Wilson took over defensively in the first half recording six blocked shots while scoring 14. Dallas would come back in the second half, going on a late-third-quarter run to trim the lead to 9 at the end of the quarter. They got as close as 3 in the fourth quarter before the Aces pulled away and won the game 104-91.
Here are three takeaways from the game:
Aces get off to a strong start
After falling to the Dallas Wings in their last matchup the Aces came out aggressive looking for revenge. The Aces made a statement in the first quarter, scoring 35 points while allowing just 20. Dallas shot just 8-21 from the field (38%), while the Aces shot a scorching 13-19 (68%). Kelsey Plum led the way with 9 points in the first quarter, while Chelsea Gray and A’ja Wilson each scored 7. The Aces led by 17 at the half behind a dominant performance from the Chelsea Gray and A’ja WIlson. Alysha Clark was huge off the bench providing a spark with 9 points on 3-4 shooting from three.
“I think we got off to a good start we were able to get stops and play in transition which really got our offense flowing,” Gray said. “Everybody was touching the ball and playing off each other really well.”
Aces Slow down Arike Ogunbowale
The Dallas Wings All-Star guard has been a headache for opponents all season, scoring from all over the floor and averaging 21.9 points per game. The Aces would be ready for the task of shutting down Ogunbowale, keeping her scoreless in the opening quarter on 0-3 shooting. Ogunbowale’s first basket and only basket of the first half would come with 3:20 remaining in the first quarter. Whether it was Jackie Young or Alysha Clark, the Aces made it difficult for Arike by battling over screens and not allowing her any open looks. Ogunbowale finished the game with 14 points, shooting 6-18 from the field and 2-7 from three.
“We got to put our hat off to Jackie she was making looks difficult and never really let her get in a rhythm,” Gray said. “I know Jackie was watching film on it and trying to be better individually. So I would say she was the head of the snake for that one.”
Another night at the office for A’ja Wilson
Following the All-star break A’ja Wilson has been on a tear averaging 27 ppg on over 50% shooting from the field. Wilson continued that dominance by scoring 22 points and grabbing 7 boards. Something that does not get talked about enough is A’ja Wilson’s defense which was on full display again as she had her hands full guarding the Wings who live in the paint. A’ja held her own on defense making things tough for Dallas all game and finishing the game with 6 blocks.
“My biggest thing is making sure I am there for my teammates.” Wilson said. Just trying to be the anchor of the defense and just kind of be the best player I can be on both sides of the basketball.”
The Aces will be back in action Tuesday taking on the Atlanta Dream with tip off set 7 p.m. PT.