Aces beat Sparks 84-66, clinch playoff berth

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Kelsey Plum hit four 3-pointers and finished with 29 points and A’ja Wilson scored 28 to help the Las Vegas Aces beat the Los Angeles Sparks 84-66 Saturday night and clinch a playoff spot.

Las Vegas (20-8) has won five of its last six games and is one game back of league-leading Chicago, the defending WNBA champion and the only other team to have clinched a 2022 postseason berth.

Jackie Young added 11 points, nine rebounds and six assists for the Aces and Chelsea Gray scored 10 points.

Wilson scored the first seven points and Plum the final four in an 11-0 run that made it 57-53 late in the third quarter and Las Vegas led the rest of the way. Jordin Canada scored to cut the Sparks’ deficit to two points about 2 minutes into the fourth but Riquna Williams and Wilson scored five points apiece in a 10-0 spurt that made it 69-57 midway through the period. The Aces led by at least nine points the rest of the way.

Chennedy Carter led the Sparks (12-15) with 15 points. Canada and Liz Cambage scored 11 points apiece and Nneka Ogwumike and Katie Lou Samuelson each scored 10.

Plum and Williams hit 3-pointers to bookend an 8-0 spurt that gave Las Vegas a 16-6 lead midway through the first quarter but the Sparks scored 16 of the next 21 points to take their first lead when Carter made two free throws with 29.4 seconds left in the period.

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More AP women’s basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/womens-basketball and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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