Mystics-Sun Preview

The Associated Press

Ivory Latta is the veteran catalyst who drives the Washington Mystics, but lately she's been receiving plenty of help from her younger teammates.

Visiting Washington seeks a third straight victory while looking to beat the Connecticut Sun for the fourth time in five meetings Thursday night.

After scoring 10 of her 15 points over the final four minutes of Friday's 68-60 win over New York, Latta delivered in the clutch Sunday while netting 14 points in a 92-84 triple-overtime win over Los Angeles.

Latta finished 4 of 17 from the field, but hit an off-balance 3-pointer to send the game into a second OT and made two free throws to force a third.

''You've shot it that many times in your life, you should feel like the next time you shoot it, the next one's going in,'' coach Mike Thibault said. ''Some players get afraid, and she's not afraid.''

The seventh-year point guard is the only player for the Mystics (3-2) averaging double figures in points at 15.0 per game.

"I had to step up and be the vet," Latta said. "But at the same time, I got confidence in the rookies. I know they'll get the job done."

Latta was referencing Bria Hartley and Stefanie Dolson. Hartley scored a season-high 20 points Sunday while Dolson added 14 and 11 boards.

''I think (Thibault) has a lot of confidence in the two of us because he knows we know how to win (having) played at (the University of)Connecticut,'' said Dolson, who teamed with Hartley to win a pair of NCAA championships with the Huskies. ''(I gained) a lot of trust in myself knowing that he trusted us and believed that we could win.''

The Mystics beat Thibault's former team in three of four meetings last season, though the Sun (2-5) seem to be gaining confidence behind No. 1 overall pick Chiney Ogwumike.

She scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in Sunday's 85-76 win over Atlanta to help Connecticut end a two-game skid.

''I think that we just focus on what we did right (each) game and we try to correct what we did wrong,'' Ogwumike said. ''We're not dwelling on the loss column. We're trying to build to add in the win column."

The Sun ended a two-game slide despite missing starting forward Kelsey Griffin because of a gastrointestinal ailment. It's unclear if she'll be available for this contest.

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