FEVER: Indiana Falls to Mystics, 88-70
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Elena Delle Donna shot 9-of-15 from the floor and added four 3-pointers on the way to 25 points and an 88-70 Washington Mystics victory over the Indiana Fever at Verizon Center.
Washington won for the sixth time in the past seven games, and beat Indiana for the fourth time in five meetings since 2015. The Fever lost its fifth straight road game.
After Indiana led 6-5 in the early going, Washington scored 13 consecutive points to take control. The Mystics led 29-12 after one period and commanded an 18-point advantage, 32-14, on a 3-pointer by Delle Donne in the opening minute of the second.
Indiana closed within 11, 48-37, on a basket by Candice Dupree to open the second half, but the Fever never got closer. The Mystics led by as many as 21 when Ivory Latta pushed the Mystics lead to 68-47 late in the third period.
"We allowed Washington to get comfortable early, and again we were forced to play catch-up against a team that spreads the floor and shoots well," said Fever coach Pokey Chatman. "I thought we took care of the ball, but we didn't turn them over enough. It's tough to win games when you don't contest the opponent and force them out of their comfort zone."
The Mystics, third in the WNBA in rebounding, outmuscled the Fever 22-13 on the boards in the first half, and 43-23 for the game. Former Fever star Krystal Thomas was a perfect 4-of-4 shooting in the opening half and finished 6-of-9 with seasons highs of 14 points and 14 rebounds.
"We won't win another game if we let someone outrebound us by 20," Chatman added with emphasis.
Indiana committed just eight turnovers, but Washington's rebounding edge led to 17 second-chance points, compared to just seven by the Fever. The Mystics shot 46 percent overall and 48 percent (10-of-21) from 3-point range. Indiana shot 43 percent from the floor, but hit just 2-of-12 3-point attempts.
Indiana was paced by Dupree and Erica Wheeler in the scoring column - Dupree scoring in double digits in her fourth straight game, Wheeler in her third. Dupree shot 7-of-12 to contribute 14 points. Wheeler's 7-of-15 shooting produced 15. Jazmon Gwathmey contributed 10 points off the bench.
Other top scorers for Washington were Latta and Tayler Hill, each with 12 points.
The Fever return to Bankers Life Fieldhouse to host Atlanta next Thursday.
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