Two teams coming off losses to the Minnesota Lynx aim to go into the WNBA’s Olympic break with a win.
The Las Vegas Aces and Dallas Wings bid to tighten up their defense on Sunday afternoon when the teams meet in Arlington, Texas.
Las Vegas (14-6) permitted 33 first-quarter points Friday night in a 77-67 home loss to Minnesota. Dallas (9-11) allowed the Lynx to hit 50.8 percent of their field goal attempts Wednesday night in an 85-79 setback in Minneapolis.
Aces coach Bill Laimbeer told the Las Vegas Review-Journal after Friday night’s game that their problems ran well beyond awful defense in the first quarter.
“That’s probably as bad a game as we’ve played all year long,” he said. “The effort we put forth tonight was not acceptable. We just didn’t have the intensity level necessary to win.”
The Aces played without center Liz Cambage, who will also miss Sunday’s game because she’s training with the Australian national team for the Tokyo Olympics. Without Cambage, the Aces made only 35.8 percent of their field goals and committed 15 turnovers.
Kelsey Plum scored 18 points for Las Vegas, but it wasn’t enough to keep the club from preventing a slice of history. Minnesota became the first team in league history to win a game without attempting a foul shot.
As for the Wings, they are hoping to counter the Aces’ paint-oriented attack with a barrage of 3-point shots. Dallas hoisted 28 in the loss at Minnesota but made just nine, a level of efficiency not good enough to beat a good team.
The Wings will need more production out of leading scorer Arike Ogunbowale than they received Wednesday night. She made just 5 of 15 attempts from the field and finished with 11 points, more than eight under her average (19.4).
Ogunbowale enters this one having scored in double figures in 57 straight games.
–Field Level Media
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