Mystics (9-14): G – Latta, G – Copper, F – Ruffin-Pratt, F – Meesseman, C – Vaughn
Sparks (20-3): G – Toliver, G – Beard, F – Carson, F – Ogwumike, C – Parker
Mystics Look to End Skid
The Mystics enter tonight’s game on a season-long six-game losing streak and are still searching for their first win of July.
They’ll have one last chance to get a win before the five-week long Olympic break tonight when they welcome the WNBA’s top ranked Los Angeles Sparks to Verizon Center.
Tonight will be the third and final matchup between these two teams and the Sparks second visit of the season to Washington. The Mystics are 0-2 this season against L.A., falling 97-67 at home back in May, and then 93-82 two weeks ago at Staples Center.
The team used a different starting lineup on Wednesday to try and shake things up, pairing veteran Ivory Latta alongside rookie Kahleah Copper in the backcourt. They also moved Kia Vaughn into the starting lineup and brought Stef Dolson off the bench. We’ll see if that was a one time move or if they go with that lineup again tonight.
They had to play Wednesday without second leading scorer Tayler Hill, who missed the game with a sprained left foot. Hill may be held out again tonight and then be given the month long Olympic break to heal.
Last Time Out
The Mystics nearly made as many 3-pointers as they did 2-pointers in Wednesday’s loss to the Liberty, as the team shot 11/22 from 3-point range and 14/41 from inside the arc.
However, it was New York’s bench that made the biggest difference in the game, as they set a WNBA record with 69 bench points in the 88-81 Liberty win.
The Mystics had four players score in double figures, led by Emma Meesseman’s 20 points.
Sparks on First Losing Streak
After starting the year 20-1, the Sparks actually enter tonight on a modest two-game losing streak. Tonight will be their third game of a three-game East Coast trip, where they have already lost in Atlanta and Indiana, and their final game before the Olympic break.
The Sparks may be showing some signs of fatigue, allowing their last three opponents to reach the 90 point plateau after not allowing any opponent to reach that mark in their first 20 games. They still lead the WNBA in defense, allowing just 75.8 ppg.
The Mystics will look to exploit the Sparks recent defensive woes and try to head into the break on a positive note.
The action tips at 7pm.