Story By: Erin Zollars
Photos By: Sol Tucker
If the movie Stella Got Her Groove Back was about Elena Delle Donne, today’s performance was reflective of Delle Donne finding her groove more and more each game back on the court.
Today against the Lynx, Delle Donne, showed her dominance on the court with a team high 21-point effort and propelling the Mystics to a 70-57 victory over the Lynx.
“We all know what Elena is capable of on the court. We know she wants to contribute in any way possible to help this team to the playoffs and hopefully back to finals this year and each game she gets stronger and tougher to defend,” said Mystics Head Coach Mike Thibault.
Minnesota went scoreless for more than six minutes in the third quarter as Washington scored 12 consecutive points to take a 19-point lead.
Kayla McBride scored 16 points and Aerial Powers added 11 for Minnesota (10-17). Sylvia Fowles had nine points and 12 rebounds.
Prior to the game Thibault was asked about the Lynx travel woes that included a canceled flight, mechanical issues on a second plane and nearly 12 hours of gate-hopping, layovers and eventual travel got the Lynx into Washington, D.C. in the wee hours of Sunday morning.
“I’m tired of hearing about it,” Thibault said pregame. “I’m tired of reading about it on Twitter. I’m tired about it. It happens to every team, and I get it. Every team would like to come in feeling fully refreshed but they got here last night. They didn’t play yesterday. They didn’t play yesterday, and I know it’s a long day, but everybody goes through that. We took a train six hours and then got on a bus for another hour and a half earlier in the year to play in Connecticut.”
Thibault changed his attitude after the game and apologized for his strong comments after Lynx Head Coach Cheryl Reeve called it insensitive to the team and the circumstances.
We will have a later article on the travel issues and how teams are still inconvenienced as a result of flying commercial. The Mystics had almost a 12-hour day of travel before after a late game on the road in Phoenix, where some of the players returning to Reagan from the flight looked drained after the loss on the road.