There are so many words that can be used to describe the 110-98 overtime loss for the Seattle Storm against the Las Vegas Aces. The game was entertaining and riveting right off the bat. There were one-point leads, tie games, and back-and-forth scoring galore.
That led to the teams trading buckets in the final seconds of regulation. When Sue Bird hit a final clutch three-pointer to give the Storm a 92-90 lead, Jackie Young comes back with a clutch layup to force overtime.
In the end, the Storm could only score six points in overtime, with Vegas outscoring them 18-6. Tonight, they face elimination, which could be Sue Bird and Briann January's final WNBA game.
Despite the loss, Aussie fans have so much to be proud of for their very own Ezi Magbegor and Stephanie Talbot.
If fans didn't know that Ezi was coming off the bench, they'd think she was back in the starting lineup with how often she was on the court. Her production value was extremely high.
Within eight seconds of her entering the game in the first quarter, she immediately hit a layup and drew the and-one call, which she converted. A bit over a minute later, she had the mismatch on Jackie Young and hit the layup for another and-one opportunity that she also converted.
The Aussie-Aussie connection was on display in the second quarter when Talbot hit her with a dime in the post for a converted layup. Ezi was phenomenal in game 3. When her number was called, she answered.
She finished with 10 points, three rebounds, an assist, and two blocks on 100% shooting from not only the line but from three.
As anticipated, Gabby Williams returned from concussion protocol and resumed her position in the starting lineup. Talbot returned to the bench, but that wasn't reflective of how she played.
Before I go on, I want to acknowledge that both Ezi and Steph recorded the most minutes and points off the bench for Seattle.
Talbot didn't start on fire in the first half. In fact, she didn't score any points until the fourth quarter, when the team needed her most. As fans know, when her number is called, she performs.
When the Aces took a six-point lead, Talbot swooped in, hit a three, and drew a foul for a four-point play, which she converted.
She followed that three with a layup with an assist from Ezi. Another Aussie-Aussie connection. Talbot hits another three to tie the game at 78 a piece and then one more to give the Storm an 81-78 lead. The fourth quarter is what truly matters in close games, and Steph showed out for her team even though the result was a loss.
Talbot finished with a bench high 12 points, four rebounds, and two assists on 75% shooting from beyond the arc.
Magbegor and Talbot's Seattle Storm continue their semi-final series against the Las Vegas Aces on Wednesday, September 7 at noon AEST in a win-or-go-home game. The Storm currently trails the Aces 2-1 in the best of five series.
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