The Atlanta Dream entered Sunday's matchup without one of their key players but put together one of their best performances of the season in a 91-74 win over the Los Angeles Sparks.
Atlanta got off to a good start despite early foul trouble from Angel McCoughtry who picked up three fouls in the first quarter. The Dream led 21-20 at the end of the period thanks in large part to the contributions of Bria Holmes and Tiffany Hayes.
The second quarter was a back and forth affair as well. Atlanta put together a 10-2 run behind Meighan Simmons and Layshia Clarendon as the Dream pushed their lead to 40-32 with 2:51 remaining in the half. The Sparks responded with a 9-3 run to trim the lead to 43-40.
Atlanta and Los Angeles continued to trade baskets in the third. After the Sparks trimmed the lead to 53-51 with 4:39 left in period, the Dream went on a 12-4 run to take a 65-55 lead with 2:20 remaining in the quarter. Atlanta would remain in control and took a 69-57 lead into the fourth.
Atlanta pushed the lead to as many as 14 in the fourth and had an answer everytime the Sparks looked like they might threaten. Layshia Clarendon’s three-point play with 5:56 remaining pushed the Dream lead back to 78-66 and they would cruise home for the win.
The win gives the Dream seven consecutive wins over the Sparks at Philips Arena and keep the Dream sitting at 4th overall in the WNBA standings. For Atlanta, Layshia Clarendon led the team in scoring with 17 points, she also posted eight rebounds, six assists, two steals and a block. Angel McCoughtry finished with 17 points and was big in the third quarter when Atlanta made their move. Tiffany Hayes and Bria Holmes finished with 15 points each.
The Dream outscored the Sparks 44-30 in the paint, scored 23 points off turnovers and also won the rebounding battle 42-36. Atlanta finished the game 27-31 from the free throw line.
Nneka Ogwumike had a huge game for the Sparks posting 26 points, 12 rebounds, three steals and two assists as well. Candace Parker finished with 22 points, nine rebounds, five assists and a steal. Kristi Tolliver spent most of today’s contest in foul trouble as she played 26 minutes total and was just 2 for 12 from the field.