Aerial Powers scored 16 points, and Elena Delle Donne and Tianna Hawkins added 14 apiece to lead six players in double figures and boost the host Washington Mystics past the Seattle Storm 88-59 on Wednesday night.

Ariel Atkins and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough both scored 11 points while Emma Meesseman finished with 10 for the Mystics, who outscored the Storm 29-8 in the fourth quarter. Washington shot 50.9 percent (29-for-57) and swished each of its 21 free-throw attempts.

Natasha Howard paced Seattle with a game-high 24 points and snagged eight rebounds. Mercedes Russell was next with 10 points.

The Mystics (18-7) seized control after halftime, stretching their lead to 15 points behind a 19-7 third-quarter run. Although Seattle drew to within eight points entering the fourth quarter, it was unable to come closer down the stretch, as Washington opened the final period on an 11-2 run.

Seattle (14-12) made just seven field goals in the second half and shot 21-for-60 (35.0 percent) overall.

Washington overcame a sluggish start and a 10-point first quarter deficit to take a 38-35 lead into halftime.

Hawkins, a reserve forward, led all scorers with 14 points at the break, shooting 6-for-10 from the field to fuel a 13-for-32 (40.6 percent) effort for the Mystics. Her surge was especially crucial as Delle Donne and Meesseman scored just eight combined points in the first half.

Strong ball movement and transition defense helped the Storm to a 23-16 advantage after 10 minutes, but Seattle struggled to maintain the pace. Although Howard and Russell formed a strong combo from close range, combining for 25 first-half points, the Storm managed little depth beyond the duo. Still, the visitors stuck around in the early going and led as late as the 1:23 mark of the second quarter.

Seattle swept Washington to earn the 2018 WNBA title, but the Mystics maintained their grip on the league’s best record by clinching the current season series. The visiting Storm edged the Mystics 74-71 on June 14 before Washington rebounded for a 99-79 road win on Aug. 2.

-Field Level Media

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Source:: Daily Times

      

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Powers, Mystics blow past Storm

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