The Mystics lost to the Storm, 75-73 in Game 2 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday. Unlike the first game, both teams played back and forth in the second half after Seattle went on an early on and Washington made a big counterattack in the second quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Seattle led by as many as five before Washington came back and were down by one at some points. But the Mystics were unable to come up with the win.
Elena Delle Donne led the Mystics’ scorers with 17 points while Ariel Atkins and Kristi Toliver added 15 each. Breanna Stewart led the Storm with 23 points. Here are some takeaways.
The Mystics defense stepped up
In the first quarter and the first half, it looked like the Mystics were about to let the Storm blow them out and take a commanding 2-0 lead. Instead, Washington held the Storm to just 23 percent shooting in the second quarter and entered halftime with a 40-36 halftime lead.
Delle Donne has the will of a lion
In the second quarter, Delle Donne scored 10 points on 4 of 8 shooting. She didn’t make any threes and instead just willed herself with those points. Without her big performance in the second quarter, Washington would have probably seen this game get away from them by halftime like last Friday.
Kristi Toliver’s three point shooting is still off
Toliver is always going to be streaky. She scored 15 points on 7 of 14 shooting but managed to miss all six of her three point shots. That said, Toliver was still clutch today, scoring several buckets in the closing minutes.
Actually, three point shooting was off as a whole
The Mystics missed all 16 of their three point shots. The Storm wasn’t much better, shooting 6 of 23 (26 percent). That’s good three point defense, but it still hurts when the Mystics missed ALL of their three point attempts and took many long shots too
Breanna Stewart will still be tough
Stewart scored 11 points in the first quarter on 4 of 6 shooting to lead the Storm to a 25-16 lead after the first quarter. Stewart wasn’t flawless where she missed two free throws late in the fourth. But Kristi Toliver didn’t take care of the ball very well in the next possession where a jump ball was called. If only the Mystics could get a game winning shot in this one......
Either way, Stewart will be tough to slow down regardless.
The Mystics need to replicate this gameplan for Game 3
Despite the loss, I liked the Mystics’ effort in this game. They just have to do it for four quarters and not just the last three.
The Mystics host the Storm on Wednesday at 8 p.m. at EagleBank Arena in Fairfax.