Mystics grab final playoff spot in 85-78 win over Dream

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) — Ariel Atkins scored 26 points and the Washington Mystics clinched the eighth and final seed to the playoffs with an 85-78 win over the Atlanta Dream on Sunday.

The Mystics (9-13) will take on No. 5-seed Phoenix (13-9) on Tuesday in a single-elimination game. Washington’s win eliminated Dallas (8-14) from playoff contention after the Wings beat the New York Liberty 82-79 earlier Sunday.

Washington secured a spot in the post season having won five of its last six games following a stretch where it had lost 11 of 12.

Myisha Hines-Allen added 16 points with 10 rebounds, Emma Meesseman scored 14 with seven assists and Kiara Leslie scored 11 for the Mystics.

Betnijah Laney scored 27 points on 11-of-16 shooting for the Dream (7-15). Rookie Chennedy Carter scored 26 points before fouling out in the game’s final minute.

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