The Connecticut Sun took the first of three matchups with the Washington Mystics last night 84-69. It was a close game for one half, but the Sun used a 13-2 run in the third quarter to open things up and never looked back.
Alyssa Thomas led the way with 23 points, scoring 15 of them in the first half to steady things for the Sun. Jonquel Jones had 10 points and 14 rebounds.
Washington was led by Emma Meesseman's 14 points while Shatori Walker-Kimbrough and Kristi Toliver had 11 a piece.
Toliver banged knees with Thomas in the first half and returned to the game a few possessions later, she didn't play in the second half. Still it was a one possession game with 7:34 left in the third quarter, the Sun held a three point lead.
Turnovers and rebounding, well lack there of in regards to the rebounding killed the visiting Mystics. By the end of the game the rebounding margin didn't show how big of a gap it was, the Sun won the battle of the boards by three. Fueling that third quarter run was offensive rebounds, giving them multiple attempts on each possession and turnovers.
What also hurt Washington and some credit goes to Connecticut for this was that they shot just 14.3% from beyond the arc. There were plenty good looks on their 21 attempts, but the difference is they didn't attack the rim like the Sun did. Connecticut shot just 30% from deep, but they got to the basket quite a bit.
It's only one game and there's clearly no reason for overreaction, the Mystics also get close to a week before playing their next game which will be their home opener. There should definitely be more of an edge in their play the next time they take the court.
This was just the first game of many where teams will be hunting them, it'll be interesting to see how they respond. As for the Sun, it was a good start to the post Ogumweke era.
They are definitely a bit different to guard with most of their bigs able to hit shots from beyond the arc and did a good job hitting the glass as a team on both ends.