Until the fourth quarter of Tuesday night’s game between the Minnesota Lynx and the Atlanta Dream, the biggest advantage either team had heading into a break was two points. After being knotted up after one quarter and tied again at halftime, the Dream’s 57-55 lead entering the final quarter was supposed to be a sign of good things to come for the team that had lost seven straight games.
Enter Napheesa Collier.
Collier’s 13 fourth-quarter points sparked a 30-12 final-period run that not only erased the two-point deficit, but also gave the Lynx an 85-69 cushion for their first win since July 14. Minnesota shot 60 percent in the fourth quarter to Atlanta’s 27.3 percent.
The Lynx were notably aided by the return of Seimone Augustus, who played her first minutes of the season after recovering from knee surgery. Augustus didn’t need much time to adjust to the new-look starting five — of which she was a part — and scored her first points of the season in the opening quarter. She finished with 8 points on 3-of-9 shooting, which moved her into 10th on the WNBA all-time scoring list.
Sylvia Fowles also had a big night for the Lynx, notching her 600th career block. She’s the fourth player in WNBA history to hit the milestone.
Minnesota was led by Collier’s 22 points, 11 rebounds and 5 assists; it was the rookie’s third career double-double. Odyssey Sims scored 13 points, while Fowles added 12 points and 11 rebounds.
Back on track after that W.— Minnesota Lynx (@minnesotalynx) August 7, 2019
Phee - 22 PTS, 11 REB
Syl - 12 PTS, 11 REB
O - 13 PTS, 4 AST pic.twitter.com/DOW9V40Gtn
Renee Montgomery paced Atlanta with 19 points, Tiffany Hayes and Alex Bentley scored 12 apiece and Jessica Breland added 10 points and 7 rebounds.
The Dream have now lost eight games in a row and are one loss away from tying their 2017 mark of nine straight losses.
Minnesota hosts the Connecticut Sun on Friday, Aug. 9 and will try for consecutive wins for the first time in about a month (8 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network).
Atlanta travels to face the Indiana Fever on Saturday, Aug. 10 with hopes of finally ending its losing streak (3 p.m. ET, CBS Sports Network).