A’ja Wilson became the first player in WNBA postseason history with three straight 30-point games, scoring 30 points to go with 11 rebounds, and the Las Vegas Aces took a 2-0 lead in their best-of-five semifinal series with the Dallas Wings, winning 91-84 at home on Tuesday.
Wilson – revealed earlier Tuesday to have finished third in Most Valuable Player voting behind Connecticut’s Alyssa Thomas and winner Breanna Stewart of New York – scored 10 first-quarter points to set the tone for Las Vegas.
The Aces never trailed and had four scorers in double figures. Chelsea Gray’s 23 points, Kelsey Plum’s 18 and Jackie Young’s 13 complemented Wilson.
Dallas rallied from 13 points down in the first half to force a 49-49 tie early in the third quarter, but Las Vegas closed the period on a 21-8 run.
After the Aces pushed their lead to 14 points early in the fourth quarter, the Wings chipped away at the deficit again with a 9-0 run.
Las Vegas responded with a quick 8-3 spurt, which included 3-pointers from Plum and Gray. The duo combined to go 7 of 11 from deep – Plum 4 of 7, Gray 3 of 4 – as the Aces shot 9 of 24 from beyond the arc.
The Wings, meanwhile, shot 10 of 26 from long range, led by Arike Ogunbowale’s 6 of 13. She connected on two attempts over a 10-4 Dallas run that trimmed the deficit to four points with 1:36 left.
The visitors got no closer.
Wilson knocked down four free throws and Young added a pair to keep Dallas at bay. Young also grabbed nine rebounds and passed for four assists.
Gray dished a game-high eight assists.
Ogunbowale led Dallas with 24 points. Natasha Howard and Teaira McCowan each recorded double-doubles; Howard tallied 20 points and 10 rebounds, and McCowan had 12 points and 10 boards.
The series shifts to Dallas’ home court in Arlington, Texas, for Game 3 on Friday.
–Field Level Media
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