Aces cruise by Liberty, clinch playoff spot

A’ja Wilson had 20 points, seven rebounds and five blocks, Dearica Hamby added 17 points and 10 rebounds, and the Las Vegas Aces beat the New York Liberty 80-63 on Saturday to clinch a playoff spot.

It was tied at 56 at the end of the third quarter before Las Vegas opened the fourth on a 13-0 run. Another 8-0 spurt made it 77-58, and the Aces cruised by outscoring the Liberty 24-7 in the frame.

Sugar Rodgers scored 12 points for Las Vegas (12-3), which has won four straight. Kayla McBride and Angel McCoughtry each had 10 points.

Amanda Zahui B grabbed a career-high 21 rebounds to set a single-game record for New York, passing Tina Charles’ 19 in 2017. The WNBA record is 24, set by Chamique Holdsclaw in 2003.

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Devin Heroux of CBC Sports reflects on a week in sports that saw a united show of solidarity across professional leagues in support of racial justice. 2:48

Paris Kea scored a career-high 14 points to pace New York (2-13). Kiah Stokes had 12 points and eight rebounds.

Hamilton’s Kia Nurse had eight points, shooting 2-of-4 from three-point range, and added two assists and a steal for New York.

Storm defeat Sky to stay atop WNBA standings

Breanna Stewart had 21 points and eight rebounds, Natasha Howard added 17 points and 15 rebounds, and the Seattle Storm beat the short-handed Chicago Sky 88-74 on Saturday to stay atop the WNBA standings.

Stewart beat the halftime buzzer with a baseline jumper to give Seattle a 49-34 lead. The Storm opened the second half on a 9-2 run for a 58-36 advantage and led by at least 14 points the rest of the way.

Jewell Loyd added 12 points for Seattle (13-3), which became the second team to clinch a playoff spot. Alysha Clark and Ezi Magbegor each scored 11 points.

Kahleah Copper scored 19 points and Allie Quigley added 11 for Chicago (10-6), which only had eight players. Courtney Vandersloot had nine points and nine assists.

Chicago was without Diamond DeShields and Azura Stevens after both players left the WNBA bubble. Stevens, averaging 11.5 points and 5.9 rebounds, is out for the season with left knee injury and DeShields left for personal reasons.

Wings hold off Fever

Arike Ogunbowale made 5 of 7 from 3-point range and finished with 28 points, Satou Sabally added 18 points and 11 rebounds, and the Dallas Wings beat the Indiana Fever 82-78 on Saturday.

Ogunbowale, who went into the game leading the WNBA in scoring at 21.5 points per game, has scored 20-plus in seven consecutive games. Allisha Gray added 13 points and Marina Mabrey scored 10 for Dallas (6-10).

Fever forward Natalie Achonwa of Toronto scored 11 points in Indiana’s loss.

WATCH | Achonwa’s 11 points not enough in loss to Wings:

Toronto’s Natalie Achonwa recorded 11 points but her Indiana Fever fell to Dallas Wings 82-78. 1:29

Candice Dupree hit a jumper to give Indiana (5-10) — which trailed by as many as 13 points in the first half — a 64-60 lead with eight minutes to play, but Ogunbowale scored 11 points from there. After Dupree made two free throws to make it 72-all with 3:56 remaining, Sabally converted a three-point play and, after Kelsey Mitchell missed a 3-pointer on the other end, made two foul shots to give the Wings a five-point lead.

Mitchell had 19 points to lead six Indiana players scoring in double figures.

Dupree made a jumper with 5:59 left in the game to give the Fever their final lead at 68-67. Indiana then went 0 for 5 from the field with three turnovers before Mitchell’s 3-pointer with 3.9 seconds to go.

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