Howard scores 20 points, Dream hand Fever 15th straight loss

ATLANTA (AP) — Rhyne Howard scored 20 points, Cheyenne Parker added 17 and the Atlanta Dream handed the Indiana Fever its 15th straight loss with a 91-81 victory on Wednesday night.

Atlanta (13-18) ended a four-game losing streak and moved into a three-way tie for seventh in the standings.

Atlanta led 64-34 early in the third quarter before Indiana battled back to get within single digits in the fourth. Indiana outscored Atlanta 28-13 in the third to get within 75-62 and started the fourth by scoring 15 of the first 22 points to make it 82-77 with 5:02 left. But the Dream scored seven straight points and led by at least nine points the rest of the way.

Aari McDonald added 13 points, Kristy Wallace scored 12 and Maya Caldwell had 10 for Atlanta. Howard scored 14 of her points in the first half before reaching 20-plus for the ninth time this season.

Atlanta made 14 of its first 18 shots (77.9%) and led 36-17 after the first quarter. The Dream started the second quarter on a 7-1 run for a 43-18 lead, and it was 62-34 at halftime. The Dream had 21 assists on 23 made field goals and shot 62.2% from the field in the first half.

NaLyssa Smith scored 21 points for Indiana (5-28). Emma Cannon added a season-high 16 points and rookie Lexie Hull had a season-high 14 points, reaching double figures for just the second time this season.

Both teams were without their leading scorers. Tiffany Hayes left Atlanta’s last game on Saturday with an ankle injury suffered in the second quarter, and Indiana’s Kelsey Mitchell is done for the season with a plantar fascia tear in her left foot.

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