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Game Summary: Atlanta Dream 87, Los Angeles Sparks 74

    Atlanta dream

June 16, 2024 – National Women’s Basketball Association (WNBA)
Atlanta Dream news story

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The Atlanta Dream started Haley Jones, Allisha Gray, Rhyne Howard, Nia Coffey and Tina Charles for the second time this season.

The Dream’s all-time record against the Sparks shifts to 22-20 and 13-8 when they play at Gateway Center. Atlanta has won the 2024 series against the Sparks, with the Dream now at 2-0 in a best of three series.


Atlanta earned its biggest win of the season for the seventh straight sellout this season, with 3,260 fans at the Gateway Center.

Gray led all scorers with a season high of 25 points, three rebounds and three steals. The guard shot 3-for-5 from 3-point range and 4-for-4 from the free-throw line.

Charles followed with her fifth double-double of the season, finishing with 20 points, 11 rebounds, two assists and one block.

Aerial Powers led the bench and tied her season highs in points and rebounds with 13 points and six, respectively.

Quotes:

Head coach Tanisha Wright on the win overall…

“Good win for us. Great win. We have to work on consistency. So our message to them is not to be satisfied.”

Tina Charles on her conversations with young players in the league…

“I just try to pay it forward. You know, when I came into this league, Sylvia Fowles would always talk to me during a game and literally tell me what to do. Nakia Sanford, Chasity Melvin, Asia Jones, who came to working when I was in Connecticut. So I just pay it forward. But that’s just who I am.

Head coach Tanisha Wright on the team’s mentality…

“I’m glad they were able to have a ‘next play’ mentality. We talked about that a lot. Not dwelling on the last play, but being able to move on so we can focus on the play at hand lies before us.”

Tina Charles about the energy of Aerial Powers…

“You walk in, (and) you just know who she is, just her energy. She gives me energy, I’m very quiet sometimes, or very often… (Powers) is very special. I I think this organization is very happy with her, and with what she can do for us as a person both on and off the field.”

Game Summary:

Question 1:

After the Sparks struck first, the Dream went on a 10-2 run that lasted more than half of the first quarter, fueled by four straight points from Gray.

Charles and Gray led Atlanta’s scoring in the first with six points each.

Charles went 3-for-5 from the field, while Gray went 2-for-4.

Howard, Naz Hillmon and Cheyenne Parker-Tyus each scored two points.

Gray also led the Dream defensively, scoring two steals this quarter.

Hillmon and Parker-Tyus came off the bench to lead Atlanta in rebounds with three boards each.

The Dream shot 38.1% from the field and 100% from the free throw line in the first.

Atlanta outscored the Sparks on both points in the paint and fast break points, 10-8 and 6-4, respectively.

Question 2:

Powers provided a spark for the Dream off the bench, opening the second quarter for Atlanta with a 3-pointer from 25 feet.

Powers and Parker-Tyus then scored the next seven straight points for the Dream, pushing them to a double-digit lead, 29-19.

Los Angeles fought back to get within four points of the Dream, but Atlanta jumped out on a 7-0 run to go up 43-32, capped off with a Charles layup to force a Sparks timeout .

With seven points in the second, Gray finished with 13 points, two steals and one rebound in the first half to lead the Dream.

Charles also finished the first half in double figures, totaling 11 points and three rebounds.

Powers scored seven points, two rebounds and two assists in the first half to lead the Dream bench.

Atlanta shot 40% from the field, 42.9% from three-point range and 90.9% from the free throw line in the second.

Question 3:

The Sparks tried to close the gap again, but Howard and Charles answered for the Dream. The two combined to score six points and keep Atlanta’s lead at nine points, 55-46, midway through the third.

Howard and Charles led Atlanta’s scoring in the third, with five points each.

Howard also led the Dream in rebounding with five total boards in the quarter.

The Dream shot 31.2% from the field and 55.6% from the free throw line.

Atlanta defeated the Sparks in second chance points, 3-2.

Question 4:

Powers opened the fourth with four straight points to tie the score for the Dream, 64-64.

Los Angeles answered with a layup to take the lead, but Howard, Gray and Powers combined to score seven points to regain the lead for the Dream, 71-66. Their efforts forced a Sparks timeout for a 15-5 total in Atlanta.

Coming out of the timeout, Gray knocked down a 3-pointer from 25 feet to put the Dream up 74-66.

Atlanta’s response grew into a dominant 20-8 run.

Hillmon found Gray for the jump shot to extend Atlanta’s lead to nine, 80-71, forcing the Sparks to call another timeout.

Howard then scored Atlanta’s next four points himself, putting the Dream up 13 and forcing Los Angeles to use the final timeout.

With 27 points, the Dream set a new scoring level for the fourth quarter of this season.

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