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WNBA Roundup: Sabrina Ionescu spoils history made by Rhyne Howard

Sabrina Ionescu (career-high 37 points) led the New York Liberty to victory over the Atlanta Dream, who saw their star, Rhyne Howard, reach 100 career threes in record time. Plus, other action around the WNBA!

Sabrina Ionescu (left) and Kayla Thornton
Photo by Christina Merrion/Swish Appeal staff

The New York Liberty built a 22-point halftime lead on the Atlanta Dream behind 20 second-quarter points from Sabrina Ionescu Friday night at Gateway Center Arena in Atlanta. Ionescu finished with a career-high 37 points on a franchise-record eight made threes and the Liberty won 106-83, overshadowing Rhyne Howard’s 100th career 3-pointer. Howard, who was the No. 1 pick in the 2022 draft, reached 100 threes in a WNBA-record 40 games.

Ionescu was 8-of-13 from deep and 9-of-10 at the stripe, adding four assists and two steals. Breanna Stewart backed her up with 25 points, nine rebounds and four blocks. She was 4-of-6 from distance and 7-of-7 on free throws. Jonquel Jones aided the winning cause with 11 points, eight boards, three helpers and two rejections, while Courtney Vandersloot was good for six points and 11 assists.

Howard was 3-of-7 from long range.

New York (5-2) attempted just four more free throws but made 10 more.

Atlanta fell to 2-4.

Other action

Dallas Wings (5-3) over Phoenix Mercury (1-5), 90-77

Arike Ogunbowale scored 30-plus for the first time this season, finishing with 35 points, five assists and two steals. Satou Sabally added 17 points and 16 rebounds and Natasha Howard had 22 points, seven boards and four blocks. Those three have been phenomenal this season and with them stepping up, nobody else needed to do much of anything. However, Odyssey Sims did add seven helpers and Kalani Brown hauled in eight rebounds.

Dallas was down four after one before winning the second by seven, the third by seven and the fourth by three.

Ogunbowale was 5-of-12 from deep and both she and Sabally were 6-of-6 at the stripe.

Sug Sutton continued her breakout season for Phoenix with 16 points, nine assists and two steals. She too was 6-of-6 on free throws.

The Wings won second chance points 26-11 and won the contest despite being outshot from the field 44.1 percent to 39 percent.

Indiana Fever (2-5) over Minnesota Lynx (1-7), 71-69

Napheesa Collier hit a three for the Lynx that cut it to 71-69 with 1:01 remaining, but Minnesota missed shots at 29 seconds and 10 seconds, so the Fever were able to hang on for the victory.

Kelsey Mitchell registered 22 points for the winners. She was 9-of-16 from the field and 3-of-6 from beyond the arc. NaLyssa Smith added 12 points and 12 rebounds, while Aliyah Boston had 10 and 11 to go along with two blocks.

Collier dropped 28 points and hauled in 14 boards in defeat.

The Fever won fast break points 19-0. Minnesota had the slight edge on the glass (38-34). It also attempted and made seven more free throws.

Los Angeles Sparks (4-3) over Chicago Sky (5-4), 77-62

Nneka Ogwumike led the Sparks with 19 points, giving her 16-plus in all six games she’s played in this year. She added a game-high 14 rebounds and tied teammate Jordin Canada (16 points) with a game-high five assists. Dearica Hamby was good for 16 points, eight boards and five steals for the winners. Canada was 6-of-6 at the stripe.

LA won the first 20-12 before losing the second 21-17. It then won the third by six and the fourth by five.

Alanna Smith set a career high in scoring for the third time this season in defeat. Her high coming into the season was 14 points; she has since scored 15, 18 twice and 19 on Friday. She added nine rebounds, two swipes and five blocks. Elizabeth Williams backed her up with 14 points, seven boards and four rejections.

The Sky had the slight edge in field goal percentage; both teams struggled from beyond the arc. The difference was the Sparks attempted and made 14 more free throws.

Washington Mystics (4-3) over Seattle Storm (1-5), 73-66

Playing without Jewell Loyd (foot), the Storm were unable to win their second in a row.

Shakira Austin led the Mystics to victory with 15 points, 11 rebounds, two steals and two blocks. Brittney Sykes led the winners in scoring with 18 points. Elena Delle Donne added 11 points, seven boards and three assists.

Ezi Magbegor dropped 24 points in defeat to go along with three helpers and three rejections. Jordan Horston posted 10 points, nine rebounds, two swipes and two blocks. Magbegor was 10-of-16 from the field.

Washington won second-chance points 13-0; Seattle won fast break points 9-0. The Storm never led and were down by as much as 14.