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FSM Essential Recap: Aces vs Storm – Game 22 – 2023

Franchise Sports Media

Las Vegas Aces (20-2) | Seattle Storm (4-17)

 

The Las Vegas Aces win their fourth game in a row, defeating the Seattle Storm, 79-63.

The Aces vs Storm played at the Climate Pledge Arena on Thursday.

Aces vs Storm | Franchise Sports Media | Kelsey Plum
Photo Credit: Kevin Clark/The Seattle Times

Following the WNBA All-Star Break, the Las Vegas Aces defeated the Seattle Storm 79-63, despite going through a poor first-half shooting performance and surviving a second-half run by Seattle

Las Vegas recorded its second-lowest field goal shooting percentage of the season (43.9 percent), however, their defense acquired 16 steals, helping produce 21 points off 18 Storm turnovers, and held Seattle to just 38.7 percent shooting from the field.

The Aces improved to 20-2 and matched the 1998 Houston Comets and 2016 Los Angeles Sparks for the best opening to a season. Las Vegas improved to 3-0 against the Storm, who are now on an eight-game losing streak.

The Aces handled business against the Storm 

A’ja Wilson picked up her 14th double-double of the season with 23 points (9-of-15 FGs, 5-of-8 FTs), 15 rebounds, three steals, and three blocks.

The start of the Aces vs Storm first half. 

Aces vs Storm | Franchise Sports Media | Kelsey Plum
Photo Credit: Kevin Clark/The Seattle Times

Wilson is now the 18th player in WNBA history with 3,000+ points, 1,000+ rebounds, 300+ assists, and 300+ blocks. Wilson got there in just 171 games, second only to her teammate Candace Parker, 1. Parker: 170 games, 2. Wilson: 171, 3. Lisa Leslie: 172.

Jackie Young chipped in 22 points (6-of-14 FGs, 3-for-4 3s, 7-of-8 FTs), eight rebounds, and two steals. Kelsey Plum put up 20 points (9-of-17 FGs, 2-for-7 3s), six assists, and two steals for the Aces, who were held below 80 points for just the third time this season.

For Seattle, the league’s leading scorer, Jewell Loyd (3-of-13 FGs, 1-for-6 3s, 5-of-7 FTs), and Ezi Magbegor (5-of-9 FGs, 1-for-4 FTs) led the way with 12 points apiece. Loyd added six rebounds and six assists, while Magbegor had seven rebounds, two steals, and three blocks. Jordan Horston poured in 11 points (4-of-6 FGs), five rebounds, and two steals off the bench for the Storm.

The end of the Aces vs Storm first half. 

The Storm started the game with a trio of 3-pointers and led 11-9 at 4:07. However, Wilson followed with six consecutive points to give the Aces their largest lead of the quarter, 17-11 at 1:13. Wilson tallied a quarter-best eight points and five rebounds.

The start of the Aces vs Storm second half. 

Aces vs Storm | Franchise Sports Media | Chelsea Gray
Photo Credit: NBAE via Getty Images

Five different Aces scored in a 14-3 quarter-opening run that gave the Aces a 33-18 lead, their largest of the half. The Storm were unable to bring the score closer and Las Vegas went to the locker room up 39-28. No Seattle player scored more than four points in the quarter. The Aces shot 44.4 percent in the quarter to up their total shooting percentage to 38.9 percent.

Back-to-back 3s from Young, followed by a driving layup from Plum, and with less than two minutes left, Las Vegas’ lead was 47-30. Late in the quarter, a 3 from Alysha Clark increased the Aces lead to 60-36. From there, momentum swung to the home side and Seattle closed the quarter on a 10-2 spurt, with 10 minutes to play the Aces lead was down to 62-46.

Seattle’s run to end the third quarter ballooned to a 19-2 run in total, and cut the Aces lead to 62-55. Plum hit a jumper to end Las Vegas’ near six-minute scoring drought and get the Aces back on track. 

A 7-0 spurt from Las Vegas gave them some breathing room and the Aces’ lead never dropped below double figures the rest of the way as they earned the 79-63 win. Plum and Wilson scored seven apiece in the final period.

In the end, the Aces made 43.9 percent of their shots from the field and 38.9 percent from distance, while the Storm made 38.7 percent of their field goal attempts, and 26.9 percent from beyond the arc.

Parker (Ankle) and Riquna WIlliams (Lower back) still weren’t with the team in Seattle.

Due to their inactives, Las Vegas signed guard Ashley Joens to an emergency hardship contract. The 6-foot-1 Iowa State guard was the 19th overall pick in the 2023 WNBA Draft. Joens averaged 19.4 points and 8.8 rebounds while shooting 35.9 percent from 3 at Iowa State. Joens played eight games for the Dallas Wings.

The final score of the Aces vs Storm was 79-63, Aces.

The Aces will now take on the Minnesota Lynx on Saturday, July 22nd, at 12:00 PM PST.

 

– Jake Ideguchi-Furukawa – Franchise Sports Media

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