Video Credit: WNBA

FSM Essential Recap: Aces vs. Wings – Game 21

Franchise Sports Media

Las Vegas Aces (15-6) | Dallas Wings (9-12)



With a rare two-game skid lingering in the Aces’ trail with just a single game remaining before the Olympic break, Vegas went into Dallas determined to score a win and put a cap on what’s been a tremendous first part of the season for them.




Aces vs Wings
Photo Credit: WNBA

Picking up where they left off on Friday night, Vegas brought their best defensive effort to Dallas and recorded three blocked shots in the early going but could not capitalize on the other end. The blocked shots aside, the Wings’ offense looked sharp to begin and was powered by rookie Charlie Collier who scored eight of Dallas’ first 12 points. A’ja Wilson followed suit and eventually got the Aces’ offense in order after the team missed their first five field goals of the game.

Both teams got a slight boost from their reserves upon entering the game, specifically Allisha Gray and Dearica Hamby, who had their fingerprints on the offensive side. Meanwhile, Wilson continued her pursuit of Dallas’ weak interior defense and caused foul trouble for Satou Sabally and Isabelle Harrison, causing Bella Alarie to see some early minutes. Wilson’s ability to get to the free-throw line ultimately kept the Aces at just a five-point disadvantage at the end of the first quarter.

After going just 4-17 from the field during the first quarter, the Aces started the second with six straight makes. Vegas grabbed momentum of the game, with Kelsey Plum and Dearica Hamby being the catalysts on both ends of the court, while A’ja Wilson got some rest early in the quarter. Vegas eventually took a 37-32 lead and seemed ready to seize complete control of the game, but Arike Ogunbowale awoke from a quiet first quarter to keep the game close. Yet, Plum and Hamby kept coming, and Dallas had no answer for either player. The two combined to score 23 of the Aces’ 33 second-quarter, which led to a 48-42 Vegas lead at the half.

Sabally, after spending the first half in foul trouble, returned the favor to the Aces and drew fouls on Vegas’ interior defenders but was unable to accomplish much more as the Wings’ primary early-quarter source of offense. Jackie Young’s four mid-range jumpers and Chelsea Gray’s paint attacks off the dribble kept the Aces out in front by a comfortable margin, and a Hamby free throw gave Vegas a 65-53 advantage. Still, Dallas wouldn’t go away.

Aces vs Wings
Photo Credit: WNBA

Moriah Jefferson and Allisha Gray made some tough shots off the bounce to weather the storm until a pair of A’ja Wilson baskets blossomed the Aces’ lead to 15. Plum drilled a wing three courtesy of a nice extra pass from Ji-Su Park, and Vegas held a 76-59 lead after three quarters.

Dallas trimmed their deficit to 13 points a couple of times in the beginning parts of the fourth, but the Aces responded each time — first with a Ji-Su Park hook shot and then two Plum free throws. Riquna Williams made consecutive jumpers, and Hamby drained one more from the post just for good measure. There wasn’t much fight left in Dallas at that point, and the Aces cruised to a 95-79 win — ending a two-game skid before the Olympic break.






Defense – For the second consecutive game, Vegas brought the intensity on the defensive end. Arike Ogunbowale, Satou Sabally, and Marina Mabrey entered the game, all averaging at least 13 points. Yet, the Aces held Mabrey scoreless, Sabally to five points, and Ogunbowale to ten on 4 of 19 shooting. Isabelle Harrison also went scoreless in this one after scoring in double-figures in the six previous games. Overall, the Aces locked in and did a tremendous job in their final game before the break.

Aces vs Wings
Photo Credit: Las Vegas Aces

More Defense – No Liz Cambage? No problem! Vegas finished this one with 11 blocked shots, the most they’ve tallied in a game since their May 23rd loss to the Connecticut Sun. A’ja Wilson and Kiah Stokes — the team’s starting frontcourt — led the way with three blocks.




Rebounding – The Aces’ surrendered 15 offensive rebounds to the Dallas Wings, with the majority of them being harmful in the early stages of the first quarter that they’d trail by five at its conclusion. It ultimately didn’t hurt the Aces as much as it could have since they held Dallas to 34 percent shooting on the night.




The Aces have a break in their schedule as the all-star game and the Olympics take place over the next month. The Washington Mystics will come to Michelob Ultra Arena to face the Aces on Sunday, August 15th. Tune into MyLVTV at 3:00 p.m. PST to follow the action live, and make sure to catch the next recap here at Franchise Sports Media.

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-Cole Huff– Franchise Sports Media

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