Game Preview: Mystics Welcome Fever to D.C. for First Meeting of Season

Indiana Fever vs. Washington Mystics
Friday, June 7
Capitol One Arena| 7:30 p.m. ET

Broadcast Information
ION

Probable Starters

Indiana Fever (2-9)

Guard – Kelsey Mitchell (15.1 ppg, 1.4 rpg, 1.9 apg)
Guard – Caitlin Clark (15.6 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 6.4 apg)
Center – Aliyah Boston (10.4 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 2.4 apg)
Forward – Kristy Wallace (5.5 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 2.2 apg)
Forward – NaLyssa Smith (11.9 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 0.9 bpg)

Washington Mystics (0-10)

Guard – Ariel Atkins (12.9 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 3.0 apg)
Guard – Karlie Samuelson (9.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 2.0 apg)
Guard – Julie Vanloo (8.1 ppg, 2.2 rpg, 5.7 apg)
Center – Stefanie Dolson (7.4 ppg, 3.4 rpg, 2.0 apg)
Forward – Aaliyah Edwards (8.9 ppg, 5.7 rpg, 1.2 bpg)

Game Status Report

Indiana: Temi Fagbenle – Out (Left Foot) 

Washington: Brittney Skyes – Out (Ankle), Shakira Austin – Out

GAME PREVIEW:

The Washington Mystics (0-10) host the Indiana Fever (2-9) on Friday night at Capital One Arena for the first of four contests this season and both teams’ third Commissioner’s Cup game. The game is set to tip off at 7:30 p.m. ET on ION.

Indiana is coming into Friday’s match after a strenuous 11-game in 20-day stint to begin its season. In the Fever’s most recent showing on Sunday, Indiana dropped its second Commissioner’s Cup game against the New York Liberty 104-68. One day before, the Fever were able to grab a 71-70 win against the Chicago Sky at Gainbridge Fieldhouse.

Against the Sky, all five Fever starters scored in double figures, spearheaded by guard Kelsey Mitchell’s 18 points and Fever forward NaLyssa Smith’s 17 points and nine rebounds. Guards Caitlin Clark and Kristy Wallace totaled 11 points and 10 points, respectively, and Clark pulled down eight rebounds and six assists. Center Aliyah Boston also tallied 10 points, eight rebounds and a career-high four blocks. At New York, Mitchell and Smith led the Fever in scoring as Mitchell scored a season-high 21 points against the Liberty and Smith totaled 17 points and eight rebounds. Sunday’s game was the third game in a row Smith recorded 17 points or more and eight or more rebounds.

On Tuesday, the Mystics faced off against the undefeated Connecticut Sun and fell, 76-59, in Uncasville, Conn. Mystics rookie forward Aaliyah Edwards led Washington in scoring and nearly posted a double-double with 14 points and nine rebounds. Forward Myisha Hines-Allen came off the bench for Washington and posted 10 points and four rebounds. Mystics guards Karlie Samuelson and Ariel Atkins both trailed with nine points and three rebounds apiece. On Thursday at home, Washington nearly clinched its first win of the season against the Chicago Sky, but fell short, 79-71. Edwards led Washington in scoring with a 23-point and career-high 14-rebound double-double, as well as four blocks and two assists. Chicago outscored Washington paint points (48-38) and in bench points (45-21).
Friday’s game marks the first time this season the Samuelson sisters will go head to head in a WNBA regular season matchup. Fever forward Katie Lou Samuelson (in her fifth season) and Mystics guard Karlie Samuelson (in her fifth season) have only played against each other twice in the WNBA. This year in her first season with the Fever, Katie Lou is averaging 18.7 minutes per game, 4.9 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.2 assists. In her first season with the Mystics, Karlie is averaging 9.7 points, 2.6 rebounds and 2.0 assists.

Additionally, Friday’s game will be the first time the 2024 WNBA No. 1 draft pick in Clark and the 2024 No. 6 draft pick Edwards face off this season. Clark and Edwards sit at spots three and four, respectively, in most rebounds per game amongst all rookies, with Clark averaging 5.1 and Edwards averaging 4.8. The last time Clark and Edwards met was on April 5 when Clark’s Iowa Hawkeyes beat Edwards’ Connecticut Huskies, 71-69, during the NCAA Final Four.