Mystics 92 - Sparks 84 (3OT)
The Mystics (3-2) won their second straight game this afternoon against the Los Angeles Sparks (2-2), 92-84, in triple-overtime. The Mystics bench came up big, with Bria Hartley leading the way with a career-high 20 points. Stefanie Dolson also had a huge game, with a career-high of her own, scoring 14 points and grabbing 11 boards. Parker led the Sparks with 32 points. But, it was Ivory Latta, with 14 points, who gave the Mystics a chance to win. Despite struggling shooting from the field during regulation, Latta’s crucial off balance three pointer with 5.2 seconds left in the first OT and free throws with 5 seconds left in the second OT tied the game both times, and it was another Latta three with a minute left in the third OT that gave the Mystics the lead for good.
The Sparks did not shoot well in the game, but a season-high 31 turnovers by the Mystics prevented an easy win. Both teams came out of the gates very sloppy, with the Mystics not showing the same type of energy that was seen in Friday night’s game. At the end of the ugly first quarter, the Mystics were able to hold a 12-10 lead.
The Mystics came out with more energy in the second quarter and were able to hold Parker, who averaged 21.3 points per game, to a low shooting percentage, but they were unable to keep her off the free throw line, and the Sparks got 10 of their first 19 points from the line. At the end of the first half, the Mystic held Los Angeles to 25.8 percent shooting and outrebounded them 19-13, holding to a 33-28 lead.
The Mystics did not play well in the third quarter and were outscored by Los Angeles 17-10 and the quarter ended with the Mystics trailing 45-43.
The Mystics started the fourth quarter with an 8-4 run that gave them back the lead and forced a Los Angeles timeout. The game was then tied at 59 with a minute to go and Jelena Milovanovic missed the potential game-winner at the end of regulation.
In both the first and second overtimes, the Mystics gave up crucial turnovers and needed the last second heroics of Latta to stay alive. The Mystics finally pulled away in the third OT and now move to 3-2 and will face the Connecticut Sun (2-5) next Thursday night.