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Aces match WNBA record with 18 3-pointers in win against Sparks

(Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

The Las Vegas Aces won their fourth game in a row Monday, taking home a 104-76 victory over the Los Angeles Sparks while tying a WNBA single-game record with 18 made 3-pointers.

The Aces shot 50.7 percent from the field, including 47.4 percent from beyond the arc. Kelsey Plum went 5-for-8 on 3-point attempts, finishing with 17 points and eight assists. Chelsea Gray, who signed a multi-year contract extension earlier Monday, went 4-for-6 from 3-point range and finished with 14 points.

With a 39-point first quarter, the Aces broke the season-high that they set just one game ago. Las Vegas hit 11 of its shots from behind the arc in the first half, taking a 20-point lead and pulling away from Los Angeles.

“We shot the ball well. They caught us on a night,” head coach Becky Hammon said. “If we can bottle that, that would be great.

“Basketball is a game of confidence. You see one or two go in the basket, people get rolling … it becomes real fun as an offensive player, especially when you know your teammates are going to find you when you’re open.”

The increase in 3-pointers marks a stark turnaround from the franchise under former coach Bill Laimbeer. Under Laimbeer, they made the fewest attempts in the league from 3-point range, shooting just 13.5 per game in 2021. This year, the team is tied with the Phoenix Mercury for the second-most 3-point attempts per game at 25.8.

Monday’s game also marked the third time this season that the Aces have scored 100 or more points. According to ESPN Stats & Information, the Aces’ average of 93.3 points per game through eight games are the most through that span in WNBA history.

“It just seems like it’s a breath of fresh air for all of us,” said A’ja Wilson. “I would definitely say we’re having fun.”

Wilson had the most points on the night, scoring 24 points while adding six rebounds. Jackie Young continued to impress, scoring 19 points – and going 2-for-2 from 3-point range – while adding nine rebounds and five assists. It was her 10th-straight game in double figures. Rookie Kierstan Bell added a career-high 12 points of her own, including two 3-pointers.

With the win, the Aces are a league-best 7-1, which also ties the franchise with the 2011 San Antonio team for the best record through eight games in franchise history.

For the Sparks, Liz Cambage had 10 points, four rebounds and three blocks in her return to Las Vegas. Chennedy Carter led the way for the Sparks with 17 points, while Jordin Canada added 11 points and nine assists.