For the first time since June 26th, the Atlanta Dream was playing at home in front of their fans after a extended road trip and the 2012 Olympics Break.
In the second period, this would be Sancho Lyttle and the Atlanta Dream's dominant quarter. The quarter opened with rookie Aneika Henry splitting free throws to give the Dream a 23-19 lead (9:23 left) followed by a Sancho Lyttle lay-up which extended Atlanta's lead to 25-19 (8:14 left) and another Sancho Lyttle jump shot gave the Dream a 27-19 lead with (7:47 remaining). Ticha Penichiero would answer with basket to cut the Dream's lead down to six only to see Sancho Lyttle respond by hitting another jump shot to extend the lead to 29-21 (7:19 left) and Armintie Price's two free-throws pushed the Dream lead to 31-21 (6:04 left). Eshaya Murphy responded with a three-pointer to cut
In the third quarter, the Chicago Sky came out of the gates and made this game interesting heading into the final period. The Sky opened on a 8-0 run as Swin Cash hit two free throws to trim the lead to 48-33 (9:23 left), followed by a Tamera Young to trim the deficit to 13 (8:43 left) and Swin Cash would again score a jump-shot to trim the deficit to 48-37 (8:08 left) and topped off by two Sylvia Fowles free throws to pull Chicago within single digits as the score was 48-39 (7:23 left). After Chicago's run, Atlanta put together their own 6-0 run as Sancho Lyttle scored another jump-shot putting the Dream up 50-39 (7:11 left) followed by an Armintie Price lay-up giving the a Dream a 52-39 lead (6:38 left) and finished off by Tiffany Hayes lay-up to extend Atlanta's lead to 54-39 (5:40 left). Sylvia Fowles ended yet another Atlanta run scoring on a driving lay-up to trim the deficit to 54-41 (5:21 left) and the Dream would again respond by scoring on a Armintie Price lay-up (5:07 left) and Lindsey Harding's running lay-up to extend the Dream lead to 58-41 with (4:35 left) and forced the Chicago Sky into a timeout with (4:34) remaining. After the Chicago timeout, the Sky put together a 7-0 run which was started by Eyshay Murphy lay-up to trim the lead to 58-43 (4:03 left), followed by two Sylvia Fowles free throws to make the score 58-45 (3:24 left) and Swin Cash continued the run with a driving lay-up and turned a three point play to make the deficit 58-48 with (2:38) left in the quarter. Tiffany Hayes ended the Sky run by splitting two free throws and giving
The Dream opened the final period with possession of the ball and Lindsey Harding would knock down a huge jump-shot to give the team a 63-53 lead (9:22 left) and Ticha Penichiero would respond with a jump-shot to pull within 8 points. Sylvia Fowles followed with a lay-up to cut the Dream’s lead to 63-57 with (8:37 left) and Tamera Young would hit two crucial free throws to pull to a 63-59 lead with (7:49 left) in the period. After Chicago's 6-0 run, rookie Tiffany Hayes knocked down a huge three pointer to give Atlanta a 66-59 with (7:39 left) and Sancho Lyttle finished with a three-point play to extend the Dream's lead to 69-59 with (6:30 left) but this contest was far from over. Chicago would answer with their own 7-0 run as Eyshay Murphy knocked down a huge three pointer to cut Atlanta's lead to 69-62 with (6:30 left) followed by a Sylvia Fowles lay-up and the deficit was now 69-64 with (6:09 left) and Ticha Penichiero lay-up cut the Dream's lead to 69-66 forcing Atlanta to take a timeout with (5:39) remaining in the period. After the Dream timeout, after both team traded possessions for a minute, rookie Tiffany Hayes would score the decisive three-point play with (4:11 left) to put the Dream up 72-66. After over a minute of trading possessions, Eyshay Murphy scored a huge lay-up to trim the Dream's lead to four with (2:38 left) forcing the team into a timeout. Atlanta would close out the game after Armintie Price scored two free throws pushing the Dream up 74-68 with (2:11 left) in the game. After a few missed opportunities from Chicago, Lindsey Harding split free throws to give the Dream a 75-68 lead with (1:12 left) in the game. Lindsey Harding added two free throws and Armintie Price split free throws to give Atlanta a 78-68 lead with (.38:7) left in the game. Sonja Petrovic split free throws to cut the Dream's lead back to 78-69 and Sancho Lyttle and Lindsey Harding would knock down a pair of free throws each to give the team a 82-69 lead. Sylvia Fowles scored the final two free throws of the game and the final score would be 82-71. For the Dream, Sancho Lyttle would be the team leader in scoring with (24) points, (7) rebounds, (5) assists, one steal, and a block and Tiffany Hayes had (18) points, (5) assists, one rebound and one steal. For Chicago, Sylvia Fowles led in scoring with (22) points, (6) rebounds, (3) steals, (2) blocks, and one assist and Swin Cash assisted her with (19) points, (4) rebounds, and (2) assists. Atlanta out-scored Chicago in 36-32 and the Dream shot (52.8%) from the field throughout the game.
PLAYER OF THE GAME:
Sancho Lyttle had a tremendous game against Chicago by posting (24) points, (7) rebounds, (5) assists, one steal, and a block. Lyttle posted her second highest total of the season and continues to be one of the key components to the Atlanta Dream. In the first half, Lyttle lead a dominant effort and her team rallied around her and that is what ultimately led to the early dominance against the Sky. As the season continues, Sancho Lyttle will need to perform at a high level all season long as the team continues to make their push to the WNBA Playoffs. Lyttle is a great rebounder for Atlanta and have the ability to score in the paint and can be a defensive nightmare for opposing forwards and she continued to show that effectiveness today.
Last night's victory put the Atlanta Dream at (11-11) and the third seed in the Eastern Conference as the season comes to a close. The Dream are facing the Washington Mystics on Friday Night at 7:00 PM on NBA TV as they look to improve to over (.500) for the first time in the 2012 season and will play the defending WNBA Champions Minnesota Lynx on Saturday Night at 7:00 PM on ESPN 2. Atlanta will play seven of the next nine games at Philips Arena, which would be a benefit for the team as far as playoff seeding for the WNBA Playoffs. If you want to follow the Atlanta Dream games on the road, sign up on WNBA.com and you'll be able to see the road games on Live Access. Until next time, LET'S GO DREAM!!!!!! For continued coverage on the team throughout the season , follow the @AtlantaDream , @PeachtreeHoops , and @ATLSportsNate on Twitter.