Layshia Clarendon, Isabelle Harrison, and Theresa Plaisance high five on the court.

Recap: Harrison, Plaisance lead Team Williams in OT victory

© Athletes Unlimited, LLC 2023 / Credit: Krystina Brown
W.G. Ramirez
Feb 23, 2023

DALLAS — With the hype and anticipation for Athletes Unlimited’s second basketball season, it seemed only fitting to tip off the campaign with an overtime thriller.

Team Blue captain Courtney Williams scored six of her team’s 10 points in the extra frame of a 96-93 win over Team Orange.

It was the fourth overtime game in league history.

Team Orange captain Odyssey Sims led all scorers with 30 points, and registered her third-career double-double by adding 12 assists to the stat sheet. NaLyssa Smith also had a double-double with 21 points and 10 rebounds, while Kierstan Bell also had 21 points for Team Orange.

Team Williams was led by Isabelle Harrison, who had 23 points, while Theresa Plaisance had 18 points, Williams finished with 14 and Layshia Clarendon had 10.

Team Blue’s bench outscored Team Orange by a whopping 33-0, and also had the edge in rebounding, 55-44.

Plaisance finished the game atop the leaderboard with 580 points, while Harrison sits a close second with 544 points.

During her “in-the-chair” interview during the fourth quarter, Plaisance praised Williams for her draft, and said her awareness of chemistry building came through during a “great week of practice.” As for her outstanding debut, the recently crowned WNBA champion said her diversity will be a benefit in this league.

“What works best for me is my versatility,” said Plaisance, who played with the Las Vegas Aces last season and recently signed with the Seattle Storm. “I feel I can play with anybody on the floor. I think that’s probably the best part of my game.”

After falling behind by as many as 11, Team Sims made a charge in the fourth quarter and got back into the game by using scoring runs of 7-2 to start the final period and 25-12 to take a quick two-point lead late in the stanza.

With the game tied at 83, Harrison gave Team Blue a three-point lead after driving around Smith for a lay-in, drawing a foul and sinking a free throw. At the other end, however, Smith returned the favor when she pulled up for a 3-pointer over Harrison to tie the game with a buzzer beater.

Williams opened the scoring in overtime for her team with a short jumper, followed by Clarendon’s drive through the key to give Team Blue a 90-86 lead. Sims and Williams traded baskets to make it 92-88 before Bell buried a 3-pointer to make it a one-point game. But Harrison and Williams – a familiar dynamic duo from the inaugural season – remained active and relentless on the offensive end and pushed the lead to five, 96-91. Sims drove the lane to cut the lead to 96-93, but couldn’t convert the three-point play. Smith had a chance to tie the game once again at the buzzer, but her shot clanked off the rim as the horn sounded.

Team Sims came out scorching behind the hot shooting of Smith, who scored eight of the team’s first 10 points. After taking leads of 8-0 and 12-3, Team Williams came to life with an 11-4 run to pull within two. A late surge from Team Williams brought them even at 18-all when Plaisance came off the bench to score seven straight points. As the buzzer sounded at the end of the first, Clarendon was fouled to draw three free throws, which they buried to give Team Blue a 21-18 lead. (Clarendon alternately uses they, she, and he pronouns.)

Team Sims’ 9-6 spurt to start the second quarter knotted the game at 27-all when Kelsey Mitchell buried one of her patented long-range 3-pointers. But a balanced effort from Team Williams ignited a 13-3 run with five different scorers contributing during the scoring spree that included three from beyond the arc, culminating with Plaisance’s long-distance call well behind the 3-stripe. As she did in the first quarter, Clarendon closed out the scoring for Team Blue with free throws, pushing the lead to seven. Sims drove the length of the court and darted down the lane for a buzzer-beating lay-in to provide the final margin before halftime, with Team Blue leading 42-37.

The third quarter saw much of the same, as Team Williams saw nine different scorers hit the stat sheet to balance the scoring. Flipside, Team Sims had just five scorers drain buckets in the third. After Team Sims closed the gap to five, at 56-51 midway through the third, Team Williams closed the quarter on a 13-7 run to head into the final quarter with a 69-58 lead.


  • #1 – Theresa Plaisance (Team Williams, +90)
  • #2 – Isabelle Harrison (Team Williams, +60)
  • #3 – Odyssey Sims (Team Sims, +30)

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