Langhorne scores 22, Mystics hold off Fever 67-66
WASHINGTON (AP) Crystal Langhorne had 22 points and 13 rebounds and the Washington Mystics held off the Indiana Fever 67-66 Friday night to snap a four-game losing streak.
Matee Ajavon added 15 in her first start of the season for the Mystics (2-6), who had an 11-point lead in the second half before Indiana made a run in the fourth quarter.
"We made some mistakes down the stretch, but it's a relief to pull off the win," said Langhorne, who shot 7 for 11 from the field.
Tamika Catchings scored 15 points and Tammy Sutton-Brown had 13 for the Fever (4-3), who lost their third straight.
Catchings had a shot to win it, but her 3-pointer from the top of the key with 2 seconds left bounced off the rim. Katie Douglas got the rebound along the baseline, but her one-hander missed at the buzzer.
"We missed so many shots throughout the game, and me personally, I missed a lot of layups a lot of open shots," Catchings said. "You've got to credit them, they did a great job tonight."
Catchings, the league's third-leading scorer (21.5 ppg), shot just 4 for 14.
Washington, which had lost four straight by average of 4.5 points, led by six at halftime and 10 after three quarters before the Fever rallied.
"It happens when you play a great team. They're gonna respond," Mystics coach Trudi Lacey said. "They punched and we punched back. We got stops when we needed to and made plays down the stretch. That's what had been missing in these close losses."
Catchings hit a 3 with 6:55 left to play to pull Indiana within five and the Fever were still down five when Sutton-Brown was fouled on a drive and converted the three-point play to make 63-61 with 2:46 left.
Indiana had several chances to tie it, but Jeanette Pohlen missed a jumper and, after a loose ball foul gave the ball back to the Fever, Catchings missed twice from inside.
Washington then got baskets from Michelle Snow and Shannon Bobbitt around a free throw by Catchings to go up 67-62, but Indiana rallied one last time.
Briann January hit two free throws and, after a Washington timeout, the Mystics were unable to inbound the ball and turned it over. Pohlen's layup made it 67-66 with 28 seconds to play.
After a miss by Snow miss, the Fever had the game's final possession.
Both teams shot 37 percent from the field, but the Fever missed nine free throws and were outrebounded, 41-32.
Bobbitt, who was signed by Washington on Wednesday, was with Indiana during preseason, but was released before the season started. She provided a spark off the bench in her Mystics debut, finishing with eight points and five assists off the bench.
"I always tell everyone, one team's trash is another team's treasure and I was just able to come out and compete against a team that cut me," Bobbitt said. "I love those girls and the Fever's a great team, and I just wanted to help the team I'm on."
After Natasha Lacy scored to put the Mystics ahead 21-19 with 6:43 left in the second quarter, Ajavon scored five straight points - on a 3-pointer and a driving layup - to make it 26-19.
The Fever got within three with under a minute left, but Ajavon's 3 with 11 seconds to go put Washington ahead 37-31 at halftime.
Updated June 15, 2012