Atkins, Cloud lead Mystics to 78-73 win over Dream
ATLANTA (AP) — Ariel Atkins scored 18 points, Natasha Cloud added 17 and the Washington Mystics erased a double-digit deficit in the second-half to beat the Atlanta Dream 78-73 on Friday night.
There were two ties and three lead changes in the final 2 1/2 minutes, the last of which came when Tianna Hawkins made two free throws to give the Mystics a 74-73 lead with 41.5 seconds left. After Atlanta’s Rhyne Howard missed a jumper, Cloud made two foul shots and Atkins stole a pass and added two more free throws to cap the scoring with 19 seconds remaining.
Howard hit four 3-pointers and led Atlanta (4-2) with 21 points. The No. 1 selection in last month’s draft, Howard is averaging 20.5 points while shooting 46.7% from behind the arc. Her 21 made 3s through six career games are second in WNBA history. Ruthie Bolton had 23 for the Sacramento Monarchs in 1997.
Cheyenne Parker scored 13 points, Nia Coffey had 12 points and 10 rebounds, and Erica Wheeler added 11 points for the Dream.
Hawkins added 11 points for Washington (5-1) and rookie Shakira Austin had 10 points, seven rebounds and three steals.
Atlanta scored 10 consecutive points to take a 56-46 lead when Wheeler hit a 3-pointer midway through the third quarter. The Mystics responded with an 11-0 run soon after.
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