Fever’s Caitlin Clark shoves Mystics’ Julie Vanloo during chippy WNBA game

July 11, 2024
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Caitlin Clark and the Indiana Fever entered Wednesday’s game against the Washington Mystics on a positive note following their win over the WNBA-leading New York Liberty on Saturday. 

But, their matchup with Washington ended on a sour note.

The Mystics 89-84 victory over Indiana secured Washington’s sixth win of the season. The game itself was a chippy affair, with Clark taking out her frustration on Mystics guard Julie Vanloo in the second quarter.

Vanloo and Clark got tangled up as the Fever rookie attempted to get herself in position to receive a pass from her teammate. But as Clark tried to get open, she shoved Vanloo.

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 Caitlin Clark reacts

Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever reacts during the second half against the Washington Mystics at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on July 10, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Vanloo reacted to the push by putting her arm out as she appeared to try to understand Clark’s motivation during the sequence.

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A replay video showed a verbal exchange between Vanloo and Clark. Also in the second quarter, Fever guard Erica Wheeler and 2024 WNBA All-Star Aliyah Boston had a back-and-forth with Mystics center Stefanie Dolson.

A referee did intervene during th dispute between Vanloo and Clark. But at one point, the first pick of the 2024 WNBA Draft seemed to imply that the Washington guard committed flopping.

Ariel Atkins and Caitlin Clark try to get a rebound

Ariel Atkins #7 of the Washington Mystics and Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever battle for the rebound during the second half at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on July 10, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

In the opening minutes of the game, Clark knocked down a 3-pointer while Vanloo was defending her. Clark did appear to make contact with Vanloo as she stepped back to attempt the 3-pointer.

Things between the two guards were chippy from that point on.

Caitlin Clark looks on during a game

Caitlin Clark #22 of the Indiana Fever looks on during the game against the Washington Mystics on July 10, 2024 at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Referees did assess Clark with an offensive foul when she appeared to push off Washington’s Ariel Atkins, who was defending the Fever star at the time.

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Clark finished the game with 29 points and 13 rebounds. Meanwhile, Vanloo recorded 13 points and secured a pair of rebounds. Next up, the Fever host the Phoenix Mercury on July 12.

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