(Photo credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)
A'ja Wilson had 34 points and eight rebounds and the No. 1 seed Las Vegas Aces pulled away from the visiting Dallas Wings for a 97-83 victory in Game 1 of their WNBA semifinal series Sunday.
Wilson made 15 of 21 field-goal attempts. Jackie Young had 19 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists, Kelsey Plum scored 25 points and Chelsea Gray scored 13 for the defending champion Aces. Game 2 of the best-of-five series is Tuesday night in Las Vegas.
Satou Sabally had 16 points, seven rebounds and seven assists for the No. 4 seed Wings. Arike Ogunbowale had 12 points and six assists, Natasha Howard had 11 points and seven rebounds and Kalani Brown, Odyssey Sims and Crystal Dangerfield scored 10 apiece.
Dallas' bench outscored its Las Vegas counterparts 27-4, but the Wings' starters couldn't keep up with the Aces' starters.
The Wings trailed by four at halftime and drew within 49-47 to start the third quarter. Gray made a basket and Plum made consecutive 3-pointers for a 57-47 lead.
Ogunbowale answered with a 3-pointer and the Wings got within seven once more before the Aces expanded the lead.
Wilson scored 14 points during an 18-7 run that put Las Vegas in command with a 75-57 lead at the end of the third quarter.
Dallas opened the fourth quarter on a 7-0 run to get within 11 points, but two consecutive 3-pointers by Young soon quashed that potential rally.
Teaira McGowan scored five early points and Odyssey Sims had four to help the Wings edge in front, 17-16. But Wilson and Young combined for 18 points in the first quarter to help Las Vegas take a 20-10 lead at the end of one.
Gray scored the Aces' first five points of the second quarter and Wilson made three consecutive baskets to push the lead to 33-26.
Plum's 3-pointer gave Las Vegas its biggest lead of the half at nine points, but baskets by Brown and Howard and a 3-pointer by Sabally pulled Dallas within 49-45 at halftime.
--Field Level Media