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Minnesota Lynx forward Maya Moore tries to block a pass from Atlanta Dream guard Angel McCoughtry in the first half of a WNBA game Tuesday, July 9, 2013, in Minneapolis.

Stacy Bengs, Associated Press - Ap

Fourth-quarter surge carries Atlanta past Lynx

  • Article by: ASSOCIATED PRESS
  • August 20, 2013 - 9:59 PM

 

– Fred Williams says he’s been keeping an eye on Tiffany Hayes’ minutes since she returned from knee surgery.

Well, sort of.

“I’ve been watching them go up,” the Dream coach said with a smile.

Hayes scored 23 points and the Atlanta Dream recovered after blowing a 17-point lead in the first half and rallied to beat the Lynx 88-75 on Tuesday night.

Hayes matched her career high for the second consecutive game.

Minnesota went almost eight minutes without a basket in the fourth quarter as Atlanta recovered from its third-quarter scoring problems to reclaim the lead. After being outscored 29-14 in the third, the Dream won the fourth quarter 22-5.

WNBA scoring leader Angel McCoughtry had 19 points and Erika de Souza added 16 points and 16 rebounds as Atlanta (14-9) scored the first 10 points of the fourth quarter and went on to its third consecutive victory — all at home.

Maya Moore shot 4-for-5 on three-pointers and led Minnesota with 23 points, but had none in the fourth quarter. Moore said poor defense was Minnesota’s biggest problem.

“We just weren’t disciplined with containing them 1-on-1,” said Moore, whose team lost for the fourth time in five games. “They did a good job of finishing. Our bad offense gave them transition points, and against Atlanta you can’t afford to turn the ball over as many times as we did, because they’re really good at exploiting that.”

Minnesota had eight of its 18 turnovers in the fourth quarter.

Rebekkah Brunson had 16 points and 14 rebounds and Seimone Augustus added 14 points for the Lynx (18-7), who began the night one-half game ahead of Los Angeles for the Western Conference lead.

The Lynx used their big third quarter to take a 70-66 lead. The Dream opened the fourth with five consecutive baskets to reclaim the advantage.

Minnesota was scoreless in the fourth until Janel McCarville made one of two free throws with 5:30 remaining. The Lynx missed their first 11 shots in the quarter and trailed 86-71 before Devereaux Peters ended the drought with 2:22 remaining.

“That’s unheard of as far as those players,” Williams said of the long field-goal drought. “That’s saying something.”

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