Mystics’ Hot Start Overwhelms Minnesota, Cruise To 87-63 Victory

The Lynx suffered their second straight loss and first ‘L’ on the road on Sunday afternoon, as the Washington Mystics defeated the defending WNBA Champions, 87-63.

Minnesota, who is known for coming out of the gates hot, seemed slightly sluggish early and basically lost the game in the first quarter, trailing 33-13 after 10 minutes of play.

“That is as good a combined offensive and defensive performance you can have against a good team,” Mystics head coach Mike Thibault said. “I do not know if we caught them on a little bit of a letdown after the other night after everything else, but we will take it. We moved the ball, we defended, we rebounded the ball for the most part, and took care of the ball. That is a nice magic formula to win most of those categories. It’s a great win.”

Being held under the 70-point threshold for the first time this season, the Lynx struggled putting the ball in the basket, only making 37.7 percent of their shots.

The Mystics relied on the efficient combination of Emma Meesseman and Tayler Hill throughout the game, as the two young studs tallied 37 points, four boards, six assists, and five steals in the game.

“That just started with our energy on the defensive end,” Hill said of their performance on offense. “From the beginning of the game we were up and that defensive energy rolled over to our offense. We were moving the ball, we were sharing the ball. Offense becomes a lot easier when we were getting stops on the defensive end and we can run.”

Numbers Game:

0: For the first time in her long and illustrious career, Lynx guard Seimone Augustus was held scoreless.

76: Minnesota ranks second in the league in points allowed, giving up this many per game. The Mystics were able to put in 87 on Sunday afternoon, the second highest point total Minnesota has given up this season.

70: Washington had three players score in double digits and the trio made this percentage of their shots throughout the game. Any game in which a team has three players who score 48 points and only miss eight shots… that team is looking pretty good to come out on top.

“We knew that we could beat them,” Meesseman said. “They didn’t change a lot from last year and we beat them twice. We knew before the game that we definitely can beat them because of the last game and it feels great now knowing that we can beat that kind of team. It’s difficult to explain because we know we could beat everybody in this league easily if we just play our game. It’s something that’s really hard to do but when we do its great.”

Quotable: Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve

We were down 20 in the first quarter, if I’m not mistaken, let alone the first half. What I shared with the team was not something I’d be able to tell you, to be honest with you.