Angel McCoughtry scored 10 of her game-high 37 points in the fourth quarter as the Atlanta Dream rallied for a 94-85 win over the Seattle Storm to advance to the second-round of the WNBA Playoffs.
Seattle used a big second quarter to build a 45-37 lead at the half but the Dream turned up the heat in the second-half and used a dominant fourth quarter to claim the victory.
“First off I’d like to tip my hat to the Seattle Storm,” Michale Cooper said following the game. “They are a very good basketball team and they gave us all that we could handle. That was a team that really had a lot of fight. They were a lot like us because they didn’t really stand out in the regular season, but it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish. It’s going to be a tough summer for Seattle, but there is a great outlook for them because they are going to be a great team in the future.”
Dream fans have become accustomed to big playoff performances from McCoughtry and Wednesday’s game might have been one of her most complete efforts. She recorded a team-best seven assists to go along with her 37 points on 14 of 21 shooting. With Tiffany Hayes and Sancho Lyttle on the sidelines, the Dream needed a big performance from Angel and she delivered.
“I’ve never coached a player like Angel McCoughtry,” Cooper said. “She’s ‘Jordan-ish’.. you know... she’s like Michael Jordan. That fourth quarter where she put on that display was something I’ve never seen before. They had their best defensive player, and I think we threw them for a loop because as a play it was one that we had never run so we just threw it right at them. Defensively they didn’t know how to guard it. We were glad we were that close and I’m glad when our time came to make our run, and Angel usually is the one to start that, we were able to pull away.”
Bria Holmes continued her run of good performances finishing with 21 points, seven rebounds and three assists. Elizabeth Williams added nine points and a game-high 16 rebounds.
Jewell Loyd led Seattle with 24 points while Breanna Stewart added 19. Sue Bird finished with 12 to go along with seven assists.
The Dream will advance to take on the Chicago Sky on Sunday in a winner-take-all matchup in the second round.