Saturday, June 24, 2006

Detroit Bags Lunch-time game. This afternoon, the Mystics lost to the Shock 92-86 at the Palace of Auburn Hills, where the Shock are undefeated this season. While today's effort clearly showed that the Mystics have regrouped from Wednesday's weak showing in New York, unfortunately they still came up short.

The Mystics fought hard against Detroit, refusing to go down without a fight. A run by Washington late in the second quarter allowed the Mystics to take a one point lead into the locker room. At the end of the third period, the Mystics were down by two, and with five minutes remaining in the game, they were down only one, but then Deanna ("Tweety") Nolan sparked a run that allowed Detroit to pull away for good. For most of the game, every time the Shock raced out to a lead, the Mystics fought back to narrow the deficit or even take a small lead. But all game long, the Mystics just couldn't manage to open a gap against the Shock. The Mystics' biggest lead was only four points, while the Shock led by as many as ten. With 20 fouls called on the Mystics to Detroit's 15, once more a Mystics' opponent scored significantly more points (17 vs 12) from the free throw line than did the Mystics. Judging from Byron Kerr's play-by-play, Detroit benefited from several critical foul calls on the Mystics and "no calls" on the Shock. That's what makes life on the road bumpy sometimes.

All five Mystics starters scored in double figures, with Alana Beard leading the way with 20 points. Nikki Teasley and Crystal Robinson both bounced back from their disappointing performances against the Liberty, scoring 16 and 13 respectively. Coco Miller gave the Mystics a good effort off the bench with 11 points and 6 rebounds in just a little over 9 minutes of playing time. As the final score suggests, the problem this afternoon was not a lack of offense by the Mystics, but an inability to stop the high-powered (big, big, and bigger) Detroit starting five. This was the first half of a back-to-back for the Mystics; they face conference-leading Connecticut tomorrow at 6 PM at the Phone Booth (where the BasketCases are hoping that the Terps' Crystal Langhorne will be able to suit up for the injured DeLisha Milton-Jones).


At 4:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hmmm.Sounds like you making excuses for them. Isn't this the same ole tired Mystic story?

At 5:46 PM, Blogger BasketCases said...

The BasketCases think that with a healthy DeLisha, this is the best Mystics team they've ever seen. Are they having a tough time right now? Yes. It's hard losing an all-star veteran player, and it's particularly hard playing without her on the road against a very talented Detroit team. And we're afraid the schedule doesn't favor the Mystics right now either. The BasketCases continue to remain upbeat about this team. Hopefully Dee will be able to rejoin the team toward the end of the season in time to help them make a run deep into the playoffs. No, with all due respect, we don't think this is the same ole tired Mystics story. But thanks for your opinion...all fans don't always have to agree.


At 7:06 PM, Anonymous TonyL222 said...

Even though they lost, I was actually encouraged by the Mystics' play today. Some folks on other msg boards were predicting the Mystics would get blown out today. Instaed, the Mystics showed they could hang in there with one of the toughest teams in the league - even minus a very key player.

Other players stepped up today. This was the type of game that with a set of different breaks, the outcome could have been different. Not taking anything from the Shock. They won and that's that. Just felt good that the team hasn't collapsed. I'm feeling pretty good about the game on Sunday.

At 11:40 AM, Anonymous MSTX Rule said...

I was thrilled with the performance against Detroit -- at least what I could imagine of it from the very good play-by-play. Six players in double figures! I hold out hope that we can play without DMJ. It just takes a couple of games to adjust, accept and compensate for a star player's loss.

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