Some photos from the Atlanta Dream’s 85-76 victory over the Indiana Fever on Sunday, May 29 at Philips Arena.
Atlanta Dream Notes
- Today’s game marked only the second game at home for the Dream, having played four of its first five on the road to open the season.
- Today’s win against Indiana snaps a two-game losing streak in the series with the Fever and also ended a stretch of four games which saw Atlanta winless against the Fever on home court. Prior to today the Dream’s last win against Indiana came on 9/4/13 – an 89-80 overtime victory.
- Atlanta has now won its last 40 out of its last 54 games dating back to the 2012 season.
- Atlanta’s 5-1 start following today’s victory marks its best effort through the first six games of the season since they also went 5-1 in 2013. The Dream went on to win 10 of their first 11 games in 2013.
- Atlanta responded when Indiana tied the game 63-63 with 7:10 remaining in regulation with a 14-5 run to seal the victory.
- Angel McCoughtry’s 22-point effort represents her sixth straight game this season, her 21st consecutive with double figure points.
- Layshia Clarendon has posted double figures with 17 points for the fifth time in six games.
- Tiffany’s Hayes 13 points marks her third straight game with double figures and fifth overall in six games.
- The Dream’s 43-33 Halftime advantage marked the first time the Dream have led at the half this season.
- The Dream led by as many as 18 points in today’s 85-76 victory.
- Atlanta limited Indiana to 12 in the first quarter, it marked the fewest points allowed in any quarter by the Dream since 9/9/15 against the Los Angeles Sparks when they limited the Sparks to 11 points in the first period.
- Atlanta opened the game with a 10-2 run, over the initial 3:26 Layshia Clarendon had four points and sparked the spurt.
Indiana Fever Notes
- Indiana made its only visit to Philips Arena this season, in what was Tamika Catchings’ final regular season game at Atlanta.
- Tamika Catchings scored a season-high 16 points in the game and joined Tina Thompson as the only players in WNBA history with at least 7,000 career points.
- Erica Wheeler scored a career scoring high with a team-high 18 points. She had 16 last week against Phoenix and has reached double-figure scoring in four of five games.
- Rookie guard and Fever scoring leader Tiffany Mitchell has scored in double figures in all five games this season. She finished with 14 points.
- Indiana lost its second straight game as Atlanta avenged a loss in Indianapolis just last week.
- The Fever played today’s game without Briann January (knee), Shenise Johnson (concussion) and Maggie Lucas (knee).
- Indiana took its first lead of the game at 55-54 with 3:15 left in the third quarter.
- Indiana opened the second half on a 15-6 run over the opening 3:57 to cut the Atlanta lead to one (49-48).
Atlanta Dream vs. Indiana Fever Postgame Quotes
May 29, 2016 – 3 p.m. at Phillips Arena – Atlanta, GA
Atlanta Dream Head Coach Michael Cooper
“I thought it was a very good game. We are slowly but surely getting our momentum. I think we did a good job to start the game strong especially with the first three or four game of the season starting in the hole. I thought we did a good job in Dallas and we are playing good but it’s early. With the format of the playoffs it is important that you win these games and that’s why we are 5-1.”
On Keys to Success and Angel McCoughtry…
“Defense. The biggest key to me is that Angel McCoughtry, one of the best players in this league, truly understands the concept of team and she is making the players around her better. When you’re star player does that it not only gives them confidence but it makes it better for the whole team because she won’t have to carry that burden on her own. I coached a very skilled player early on in Lisa Leslie and one thing that we came to was that when you are a superstar later in your career you can do one of two things: you can get us to the top or take us over. You can’t do both and I think she realizes that so she’s helping us be where we want to be and ultimately we are playing for a championship.”
#35 Angel McCoughtry
On four straight wins…
“We have a great chemistry and the one thing that I’ve learned in my career is positivity. I wasn’t a positive player earlier in my career but now I’m trying to enforce positivity whether we win or lose and if you have positivity nothing can get you down. That is a true heart of a champion.”
#23 Layshia Clarendon
On playing against former team…
“It was chippy for sure. They already beat us once so you definitely want to get that payback but I already feel so acclimated with this team and it felt like it was just playing another team and we just wanted to get the win and keep this momentum going.”
What does it mean to ‘Run with the Dream’?
“I think if you watch our game for two minutes you realize that we want to be an up-tempo team. We’re super athletic, we’re good defensively and we just want to get out and get easy buckets. I think we saw that in the first half. Just get people on their heels, and so to run with us it just means you have to get out and run the court. As [Head Coach Michael] Cooper always says on the bench, ‘Where are you going to be?’”
Indiana Fever Head Coach Stephanie White
On Tamika Catchings…
“I don’t know if you can put into words what Tamika [Catchings] means to our franchise. She is our franchise. She’s the heart and soul of the team. Everything that we stand for and all of our core values is because of her. Not just our team but our city and our state. Tamika Catchings is going to have a huge legacy on the floor, but she will have an even greater legacy off the floor. What she’s done for the youth of our community, and her foundation… It’s just an honor to have been able to play by her side, and an honor to have been able to be her coach.”
On second half adjustments…
“I think we competed at a higher level. We turned up our defensive energy and intensity. We were more aggressive and we played more together on both ends of the floor. That’s what we have to do. We don’t have one or two individuals that are going to carry our team. We have to do it collectively and we have really struggled to start the game well. In the second half, I feel like we came out with a higher intensity level and we played together but then we started to fizzle out in the fourth.”
#24 Tamika Catchings
On playing against the Atlanta Dream…
“I thought it was a great game. I’m obviously disappointed we didn’t get the win. One thing that we struggle with is the same thing as in the last game against Minnesota and that was getting behind right off the bat and then having to climb back. I’m proud of our team for continuously fighting and just putting ourselves in the position to be right there. Now we have to learn how to finish games.”
On scoring 7,000th point…
“I mean it’s cool but I think it’s kind of hard to look at it because I’m still in the moment and every single day I’m just trying to get better and be a better player for my team and the best leader for my team. While it’s cool, no it’s great, but it’s still one of those moments where we should have won so I’m looking at the game and more so looking at everything else.”
On advice for young aspiring players…
“Dream big and practice hard. I think a lot of people look at professional athletes and think ‘oh yeah I want to do that’ but you don’t realize all of the work that it took to get to this point. So putting yourself in a position that if this is something that you can truly see yourself doing, make sure that you’re always working hard, always in the gym, and always pushing yourself to another level.”