Dallas Wings defender Arike Ogunbowale said she would person been contented scoring 10 points successful her WNBA All-Star Game debut.
Try 26 points alternatively — and MVP honors against the world’s champion hoops team.
Ogunbowale powered Team WNBA to a 93-85 triumph implicit the U.S. women’s nationalist squad Wednesday astatine Michelob Ultra Arena earlier an announced assemblage of 5,175.
Jonquel Jones finished with 18 points and 14 rebounds for Team WNBA. Aces guardant Dearica Hamby scored 2 successful her All-Star debut.
For Team USA, Aces guardant A’ja Wilson had 8 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists, and Aces defender Chelsea Gray added 7 points and 3 assists.
Ogunbowale was successful the excavation of players eligible for enactment to Team USA, but was not picked contempt her lasting arsenic 1 of the WNBA’s champion scorers.
“All those girls are deserving, truthful hopefully they spell triumph a golden medal,” she said.
Said Jones: “She’s young, she’s going to person her opportunity.”
The Olympic squad had scrimmaged against WNBA All-Stars successful the past, but Wednesday was the archetypal authoritative crippled betwixt the squads. The Americans began grooming successful Las Vegas successful mentation for the Tokyo Games, and the All-Stars convened to observe their palmy seasons.
The Olympians and All-Stars promised a much competitory crippled than astir All-Star Games due to the fact that of the stakes — Team USA is playing for its seventh consecutive golden medal.
And they did.
Both teams committed to playing intense, cohesive defense, thereby eliminating the fast-break points and uncontested layups that person travel to specify the All-Star Game. But Team WNBA was a small much crisp with its execution, and Ogunbowale and Jones were each but unstoppable.
“We learned we’re not a squad yet,” Olympic staple and Seattle Storm standout Sue Bird said. “We’ve had 1 practice, and this radical has ne'er played unneurotic before. We learned it’s ne'er arsenic elemental arsenic throwing 12 of the champion retired determination and it conscionable clicks. It’s ne'er been the case. It has not been the lawsuit successful immoderate Olympics that we’ve played in, and it was a bully reminder of that.”
Hamby said she’s going to retrieve her archetypal All-Star Game experience, and Wilson said she was blessed to person the enactment of the hometown crowd, calling for the crippled to beryllium played each twelvemonth successful Las Vegas.
“At the extremity of the day, we gave radical what they wanted,” Wilson said. “Of course, we person things to enactment connected from our end. But it was a regular-season game. It’s legit. People spot america connected TV and effort to marque a gag astir it. But astatine the extremity of the day, it is real. We’re precise competitive.”
Aces halfway Liz Cambage did not play for the All-Stars. She volition play for Australia successful the Olympics.