Atlanta Dream fall short in 85-88 loss to Phoenix Mercury

LOS ANGELES, CA – MAY 15: Allisha Gray #15 of the Atlanta Dream rebounds the ball during the game against the Los Angeles Sparks on May 15, 2024 at Arena in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2024 NBAE (Photo by Juan Ocampo/NBAE via Getty Images)

By: Tori Newman, Atlanta Dream Communications Assistant  

ATLANTA, Ga. — The Dream dropped its second game of the 2024 season to the Phoenix Mercury, overcoming a 12-point deficit but were unable to secure its lead after a dominant fourth quarter effort.  

Allisha Gray led all Dream scorers for the night, totaling 22 points, two assists, two blocks and six rebounds. Rhyne Howard finished just shy of a double-double, totaling 21 points and nine rebounds.  


All the momentum shifted in Atlanta’s favor once the Dream opened the final quarter on a 21-9 run. Initially starting the fourth down by five, Gray shouldered the Dream offense and produced seven consecutive points.  


The Dream secured its first lead of the night 73-72, once Howard found Parker-Tyus for a layup. Parker-Tyus totaled 12 points in the fourth, hitting from both inside and behind the arc. 

The Mercury kept the game within single digits, revived by Sophie Cunnigham who knocked down the 3-pointer to give Phoenix a 1-point lead, 83-84.  

Coming out of an Atlanta timeout, Dangerfield found Parker-Tyus underneath the basket with a lob for the layup, bringing Atlanta within one point of Phoenix, 85-86 with just 33 seconds left to play. 

As the clock wound down, Howard launched a 3-pointer from 27 feet to tie the game, but it was no good.  

Despite the closing minutes Atlanta came back after trailing behind a quick 12-3 Phoenix run to open the game. 

The Dream fought back throughout the first half, driven by Howard who finished the half with 17 points. The guard remained a threat behind the arc throughout the night and marked a new season-high in threes after sinking her fifth 3-pointer. 

The third quarter belonged to newcomer Crystal Dangerfield. As Phoenix looked to mitigate Howard’s impact, Dangerfield emerged and led Atlanta with eight points. The guard hit the first 3-pointer of her Dream career and finished the night with 10 points.  


The Dream leave its first road outing 1-1, and head back home to host the Dallas Wings for their 2024 home opener on May 21, at 7:30 p.m. The matchup will stream on Peachtree Sports Network.