WASHINGTON, July 30 (UPI) -- Nykesha Sales scored 25 points and Shannon Johnson added 24 as the Orlando Miracle pulled away in the second half Tuesday night for a 70-55 victory over the Washington Mystics.
Sales shot 10-of-15 and Johnson made 7-of-13 shots for Orlando, which handed Washington its third straight loss.
The duo got things going early as the Miracle jumped out to a 21-4 lead with 11:36 left. Sales had 10 of her 19 points in the opening half during that burst, while Johnson had six.
Washington chipped away at the deficit and trailed 38-30 at intermission. The Mystics pulled within 45-41 with 11:36 left in the second half on a layup by Chamique Holdsclaw.
Reserve Adrienne Johnson converted three consecutive jumpers, highlighting a 11-4 run that increased Orlando's advantage to 56-45 with 4:41 remaining.
Holdsclaw was the only Mystic in double figures with 18 points.
Washington shot just 32 percent (23-of-73) and fell into a first-place tie with the New York Liberty in the Eastern Conference.
Orlando has won consecutive games for the first time since July 3-6 and leads Miami by 1 1/2 games for the fourth and final playoff spot in the East.