George Washington University, Charles E. Smith Center– The Los Angeles Sparks championship run has come to an end at the hands of Elena Della Donne and the Washington Mystics in a 96-64 in the second round of the single elimination playoff bracket of the 2018 WNBA season.
After beating the Minnesota Lynx in an early pairing of previous WNBA champions, the Sparks faced the third place Mystics in what turned out to be a more than a formidable match up on their road to the Finals.
Washington jumped on the Sparks early as Della Donne scored eight of her game high 19 points in addition to four assists and 12 rebounds to lead the home team in the first period. This set the tone for the rest of the game as they outscored Los Angeles 27-16 on 58% shooting.
The rest of the game would be more of the same as the Mystics outscored the Sparks in every quarter, out shooting Los Angeles 56% from the field as a team to 34% for the game.
For the Sparks, center Candace Parker, the only Los Angeles player to be in double figures, scored 16 points and added eight rebounds. Power forward Nneka Ogwumike contributed eight points on 2-10 shooting and three rebounds for the game. Point guard Chelsea Gray had seven points on 2-11 from the field with three rebounds and three assists. Riquna Williams scored four points on 2-9 shooting.
Mystics center LaToya Sanders contributed 14 points on 63% shooting with four assists and seven rebounds while point guard Natasha Cloud added 13 points, seven assists and five rebounds. Small forward Ariel Atkins had 14 points on 6-7 shooting including 2-2 from behind the arch.
The Washington Mystics will advance to the semi-finals to face the Atlanta Dream in a best of five series. The winner will advance to the WNBA Finals.