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Mystics vs. Liberty final score: Washington falls in close game, 74-70

Despite an even game from start to finish and a late lead, the Mystics weren’t able to win this one.

New York Liberty v Washington Mystics
Natasha Cloud dribbles the ball in the Washington Mystics’ game against the New York Liberty.
Photo by Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images

The Washington Mystics lost to the New York Liberty, 74-70 on Friday night at the Entertainment and Sports Arena in Congress Heights.

Depending on how you look at things, this game was a defensive showdown, or a clash of two teams that struggled to get anything going. Through the first three quarters, both teams shot under 40 percent and both teams committed at least 10 turnovers each. Neither team led by double digits.

Finally in the fourth quarter, Washington was able to make a late run and led 68-65 with under 1:30 left after Natasha Cloud made a pull up jumper. However, New York countered with a three of their own. Washington led again, 70-68 on the next possession, but Natasha Howard made an and-one shot to give the Liberty a 71-70 lead with just under a minute left.

Cloud attempted a three toward the end of the game, but missed. Ultimately, the Liberty were able to ice the game with free throws. Cloud led the Mystics with 17 points and 8 assists. For the Liberty, Sabrina Ionescu led with 24 points.

The Mystics’ next game is on Sunday when they play the Chicago Sky on the road. Tip off is at 6 p.m. ET.