Sparks Beat Aces 80-71 in Scrimmage

Led by 20 points from Nia Coffey, including four 3-pointers, the Sparks overcame a halftime deficit to defeat the Las Vegas Aces 80-71 in their opening scrimmage.

First Quarter

Chiney Ogwumike scored the first Sparks basket of the game with a 3-pointer to give the Sparks a 3-1 lead. The Sparks showed an early commitment to spacing with all three frontcourt starters in Ogwumike, Amanda Zahui B. and Jasmine Walker attempting 3-pointers. Walker, the No. 7 overall pick in the 2021 draft, sunk a 3-pointer to pull the Sparks to within two at 10-8. A Nia Coffey mid-range jumper tied the game at 16-16. Aces rookie Destiny Slocum and Coffey exchanged triples to end the first quarter with the score tied at 19. Coffey led the Sparks with seven first-quarter points.

Second Quarter

Chiney opened up the second quarter with a jumper and took a charge on Liz Cambage to give the Sparks a 21-19 lead. The Aces rattled off a 9-1 run to go ahead 28-22. The Sparks responded and a Watts 3-pointer pulls the Sparks within 28-27. A Sykes basket plus the foul gave the Sparks the lead back at 30- 29. The Aces closed on a 6-2 run and led 35-32 at the half. C. Ogwumike and Coffey led the Sparks in first-half scoring.

Third Quarter

The third quarter began with both teams keeping pace, as the Aces led 43-38 at the media timeout with 4:57 left in the period. Zahui B. who led the Sparks in rebounding, found Erica Wheeler for a triple off an offensive board to pull the Sparks to within 43-42. A Zahui B. three-pointer gave the Sparks a 45-44 lead. The Aces were in the bonus and after several free throws went up 49-45. Coffey responded with back-to-back triples. A Bria Holmes layup tied the game at 53-53 to end the third quarter. Coffey had 15 points at the end of the period.

Fourth Quarter

The Aces started the fourth quarter on a 4-0 run before Coffey responded for the 17th point on an elbow jumper. A Holmes basket tied the game at 57 with 8:08 remaining, and a Coffey triple put the Sparks up 60-57. A Holmes triple put the Sparks up 63-59 with 7:18 remaining. Holmes hit another triple to give the Sparks a 66-61 lead, before a Slocum triple pulled the Aces to within two at 66-64. A Sydney Wiese triple gave the Sparks a 71-66 lead with four minutes left. Wiese followed that up with a runner to put the Sparks up 73-67 with two minutes left. A Walker leaner put the Sparks up 75-69 with just over a minute left and she then added a triple to give the Sparks a 78-69 lead. The Sparks held on to win 80-71.

Starting Lineups

Los Angeles

G- Erica Wheeler
G- Brittney Sykes
C- Amanda Zahui B.
F- Jasmine Walker
F- Chiney Ogwumike

Las Vegas

G-Kelsey Plum
G-Jackie Young
C-Liz Cambage
F-A’ja Wilson
F-Angel McCoughtry

Roster Notes

10 LA Sparks players entered the game today. Kristi Toliver (rest), Nneka Ogwumike (rest), Seimone Augustus (rest), and Kristine Anigwe (clearing health and safety protocols) did not play.