August 8, 2018 / 1:33 AM / 3 months ago

Dream dump Aces, seal playoff berth

Alex Bentley and Elizabeth Williams each scored 22 points as the Atlanta Dream clinched a WNBA playoff spot with their 11th win in 12 games, a 109-100 decision against the visiting Las Vegas Aces on Tuesday night at McCamish Pavilion.

Tiffany Hayes added 21 points, and Angel McCoughtry (19) and Brittney Sykes (12) also scored in double figures for Atlanta (19-10), which set a franchise record for points in a game.

The Dream, who shot 53.8 percent from the floor, including 9 of 23 from 3-point range, also blocked a season-high 14 shots. Jessica Breland swatted five shots and had 11 rebounds and six points, and Williams rejected four shots.

Kelsey Plum scored 20 points and dished off a franchise-record-tying 13 assists to lead Las Vegas, which lost its fourth in a row. Kayla McBride finished with 19 points, rookie forward A’ja Wilson scored 18 points and grabbed eight rebounds, and Dearica Hamby added 13 points for the Aces (12-17).

Las Vegas was finishing up a three-game road trip that started with a forfeit loss at Washington on Friday after the Aces decided not to play the game following a 26-hour travel ordeal to get to D.C.

The Aces built a 25-16 lead in the first eight minutes, with McBride leading the way with seven points.

Atlanta, with 14 points off the bench by Bentley and six more by Sykes, rallied to take a 42-37 lead midway through the second quarter following back-to-back layups by Hayes. Las Vegas ended the half with a 12-5 run that featured five points each from Wilson and Plum, and the Aces led at halftime, 60-56.

The contest, which featured nine ties and 13 lead changes, see-sawed back and forth until Bentley hit back-to-back jumpers to give Atlanta a 97-94 lead. A 3-pointer by Hayes put the Dream up 101-96 with 3:39 to go. McBride hit a pair of free throws to cut Las Vegas’ deficit to 101-98 before the Dream pulled away with an 8-2 run that featured back-to-back baskets by Williams.

—Field Level Media

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