WNBA preview: Washington Mystics vs. Indiana Fever

July 2
Mystics vs. Fever

When: 7 p.m. Where: Verizon Center.

TV: Comcast SportsNet.

Data: The Washington Mystics (7-10) are set to complete a three-game homestand before embarking on a season-long five-game road trip that includes matchups against opponents in first (Atlanta Dream) and third place (Chicago Sky) in the Eastern Conference.

Washington occupies the fourth and final playoff spot in the East despite having lost five of seven and eight of its last 11 games.

 Mystics Coach Mike Thibault conducted two practices Tuesday, one in the morning and a second during the afternoon, in the wake of his team’s 73-65 loss two days earlier to the San Antonio Silver Stars in which Washington managed only 14 points in the fourth quarter.

The Mystics are the second-lowest-scoring club in the WNBA at 72.4 points per game and failed to score more than 67 points in six of eight losses last month. Playing faster is a point of emphasis heading into the second half of the season as Washington seeks consecutive trips to the playoffs.

 Washington also ranks last in the league in turnover margin (minus-3.5) and is third to last in turnovers per game (15.4) and field goal percentage (.421). The Mystics shot 38.1 percent against the Silver Stars, with only three of nine players making more than half of their field goal attempts.

 The Fever (6-9), meanwhile, has lost four in a row, five of six and six of eight since beating Washington, 64-61, in the teams’ last matchup June 6 at Verizon Center. Mystics rookie guard Bria Hartley scored a team-high 16 points in that game but has missed 21 of 26 shots over the last three games.

— Gene Wang

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