The Washington Mystics (3-3) lose again for the third time in a row, but this time to a (at first) winless New York Liberty (1-5) team, 77-64. It clearly wasn’t a problem for the Liberty who hadn’t won a game till now and lost rookie Sabrina Ionescu indefinitely to an ankle injury. As for Washington, this should’ve been an open and close game, with the Mystics coming out on top but Washington’s shots weren’t falling along with sloppy play caused another mark in the loss column.
This game wasn’t which player was hot for either team, but more so, which team played better collaboratively together and that was New York. Granted, neither team shot great coming into this game, but the Liberty had more shots fall in their favor than Washington did. The Mystics shot 37.7 percent overall as a team, while the Liberty shot 39.3 percent.
The biggest gap came when New York came out shooting three-pointers, while Washington’s three-pointers were mostly bricks. A low 25 percent shooting from three-point range for the Mystics was not a good look especially from a team that can excel in that aspect of the game. Liberty bench outscored Washington 17-6 and New York also out-rebounded the Mystics 38-26.
In the first half, Washington struggled but maintained stability when it came to shooting. Starting in the first half, the Mystics shot 3-of-9 from three-point, but then only made one three-pointer in the second half finished 4-of-16.
In the scoring aspect, the Mystics only returning starter, Ariel Atkins, disappeared as she only had nine points shooting 4-of-12 in the game. Aerial Powers despite rolling her ankle in the second quarter and taking a hard foul had a game-high 20 points and four steals.
Emma Meesseman wasn’t far behind with 17 points and Myisha Hines-Allen with 12 points and eight rebounds.
As for the New York Liberty, Kia Nurse had 17 points and Layshia Clarendon had 14 points, six rebounds and four assists. The star of the Liberty was Amanda Zahui B. who notched a double-double, 14 points, 14 rebounds.
One team left the court with confidence to win more games this season, while the other may still be trying to find themselves despite early success in the season. Time is ticking away and Washington needs to find their edge quick, fast and in a hurry.
The Mystics will play the Indiana Fever on Sunday August 9 at 7 p.m. ET. This will be their second meeting of the season. Washington played Indiana to open the WNBA season winning 101-76. Let’s hope they can do this again. The game will be televised on ESPN2.