Armintie Price led six players in double figures with 19 points as the Atlanta Dream defeated the Washington Mystics 95-73 at Philips Arena. The Dream grabbed an early 26-14 lead before cruising into the half with a 49-31 advantage. The Mystics got a run going in the third quarter out scoring Atlanta 30-23 to get things back interesting before some long distance shooting from Allison Bales in the fourth sealed the victory for the Dream.
Atlanta used a balanced attack on offense led by Price's 19 points. Angel McCoughtry finished with 16 points, while Coco Miller, Iziane Castro Marques, and Allison Bales all finished with 15 points apiece. Bales started her second straight game for the injured Erika de Souza and answered a Mystics run with two key three point baskets. For the night Bales was 6 for 7 from the field and 3 for 3 from three point range. Sancho Lyttle finished with 11 points and eight rebounds.
The Mystics were led by Jasmine Thomas' 19 points. The Atlanta defense did a much better job against Crystal Langhorne who has torched the Dream this season. Langhorne finished with 15 points on 4 of 13 shooting in the game. Marissa Coleman rounds out the Washington players in double figures with 12 points.
Just one night after falling in Washington, Atlanta did exactly what they needed to do which was put the Mystics in a hole early and not let them out. Save one instance in the third quarter when the defense appeared to relax, the Dream did a good job of keeping the accelerator mashed to the floor and now find themselves just one win away from clinching a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The victory pushes Atlanta's record to 17-14 and 2.5 games over the idle Chicago Sky for the fourth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Atlanta has just three games remaining this season with the 3-27 Tulsa Shock up next Sunday at Philips Arena.
For more on the Atlanta Dream and the WNBA Playoff race be sure and check out Swish Appeal.