The Las Vegas Aces will look to finish off the Dallas Wings and advance to the WNBA Finals when the two teams square off in Game 3 of their semifinal series on Friday in Arlington, Texas.
The Aces have swept the first two games of the best-of-five series, meaning Dallas must win on Friday to stay alive. If Dallas wins, it will host again on Sunday.
To do that, Dallas must find a way to stop the Aces’ star center A’Ja Wilson, who has dominated the first two games. Las Vegas never trailed in Tuesday’s 91-84 Game 2 victory as Wilson poured in 30 points and grabbed 11 rebounds — becoming the first player in WNBA history to score 30 or more points in three consecutive playoff games.
Wilson scored 34 points in the Aces’ 97-83 win in Game 1 on Sunday and 38 in the clinching game of Las Vegas’ first-round series victory over Chicago on Sept. 17.
She canned 10 of her 18 shots from the field in Game 2 against Dallas to help spur the victory.
“This is what I get paid to do,” Wilson said Tuesday. “I get paid to play basketball and have fun with my teammates. This is kind of what I’m made for, and I try to make sure that my team is s doing the same.”
Chelsea Gray added 23 points and eight assists for top-seeded Las Vegas, with Kelsey Plum scoring 18 and Jackie Young adding 13 points and nine rebounds.
Arike Ogunbowale paced Dallas with 24 points in the loss while Natasha Howard (20 points, 10 rebounds) and Teaira McCowan (12, 10) each recorded double-doubles.
“We got the 14-point loss in the first game down to seven this time, and we’ve done a lot of good things in both games,” Dallas coach Latricia Trammell said Tuesday. “We still have that championship spirit and that championship mentality. I liked our physicality and the way we played in the paint. We just have to be better.”
That will be difficult if the Wings can’t stop Wilson.
“We were able to stick to the game plan mostly with (Wilson), but she’s pulled in a lot from her bag of tricks — which is considerable,” Trammell said. “We have to keep her off the free-throw line and make her earn her points.”
–Field Level Media