- Erica Blackburn
Mystics blows another chance to get back into the playoff race
The Washington Mystics took on the Dallas Wings Tuesday evening at the Entertainment & Sports Arena in Washington, D.C. and lost a hard fought game, 82-77.
The game started out with both teams battling. Late in the first quarter, the Mystics started to pull away and won the quarter 26-18. The second quarter was won by the Mystics, and took a 43-36 lead into halftime.
Dallas came out with purpose in the third quarter, chipping away at Washington’s lead. A timely three by Dallas guard Arike Ogunbowale tied the game. Dallas took their first lead since the first quarter late in the third quarter, but the Mystics wouldn’t go away easy. Washington found a second wind and took a one point lead heading into the fourth quarter.
The score was neck and neck throughout the fourth quarter. But the difference in this game was the performance of the bench. Theresa Plaisance and Sydney gave the Mystics an edge in a game that didn’t see Tina Charles, nor Delle Donne finish. A crucial moment in the game came with 1:06, when Ogunbowale drove to the basket and Erica McCall sacrificed her body to get the call. The referees called an offensive foul on the floor, but went to an official review. The call was overturned, and Ogunbowale got two free throws. The Mystics had one more scoring opportunity with 8.6 seconds remaining, down by three. Ariel Atkins had a great look on the left wing but couldn’t come down with the bucket.
Elena Delle Donne left the game after only playing 12 minutes. She managed 7 points.
Ariel Atkins contributed 12 points, Myisha Hines-Allen finished with 16 points, and Erica McCall chipped in six points off the bench. Speaking of benches, the Mystics also outscored the Wings bench, 33-19.
With Charles out and uncertainty regarding Delle Donne’s status, the Mystics will have to go over and beyond to stay afloat and keep their chances of securing a playoff berth alive.
Washington will play the Dallas Wings again on Saturday, August 28th at the Entertainment & Sports Arena at 7PM ET.