The Seattle Storm wore down a short-handed Atlanta Dream.
Tanisha Wright scored 13 of her 21 points in the second half, and Camille Little added 19 points and 10 rebounds as Seattle beat Atlanta, 73-65, at KeyArena on Sunday.
“I thought for the personnel we have on the floor right now, we really generated a lot of energy,” said Dream coach Fred Williams. “But in the fourth quarter, we ran out of gas. We had some open shots but didn’t put those down.”
Shekinna Stricklen added 10 points for the Storm. Seattle (6-8) had lost five of its past six.
Rookie Alex Bentley scored 16, and Erika de Souza had 16 points and 14 rebounds for Atlanta (10-3), which only had eight players available. The Dream was missing Angel McCoughtry (strained Achilles), Sancho Lyttle (foot) and Tiffany Hayes (knee).
Seattle can relate to playing short-handed. Star players Sue Bird and Lauren Jackson are out this season with injuries.
“I mean, as much as they don’t have McCoughtry and Lyttle, we’re missing two big dogs, too,” Wright said. “But I’m sure they’re not focused on that and I’m not focused on that either. I’m focused on getting wins and tonight we got a win and that’s all that matters.”
Storm coach Brian Agler noticed the difference in the Dream in the final quarter.
“I don’t think there is any question they wore down,” Agler said. “I thought they played very well. … The way they fought short-handed. But I’m not feeling sorry for them because there are a lot of teams short-handed.”
Atlanta forward Armintie Herrington said the injuries are a challenge many teams face.
“It’s pretty hard but nobody is feeling sorry for the Atlanta Dream right now,” Herrington said. “We didn’t feel sorry for the teams we beat when they were injured so you have to find a way to win and keep playing hard.”
Little scored five and Stricklen four during a 13-0 run to give Seattle a 65-54 lead with 3:35 left after the Storm trailed 54-52 with 8:52 remaining.
Courtney Clements hit a 3-pointer to snap Atlanta’s six-minute scoring drought.
Stricklen tied the game at 52 with a three-point play early in the fourth quarter. She added a putback to give the Storm its first lead of the game at 56-54 with 7:41 remaining and 20 seconds later hit an 8-footer to make it a four-point lead.
“She really had a good stretch there in the fourth,” Agler said about Stricklen. “She made multiple plays and had a couple of layups and made a good one-on-one move. She didn’t get off to a great start but had a good game for us.”
Wright scored seven to help Seattle cut an eight-point deficit to 50-47 after three quarters. Herrington scored the opening five points of the third quarter for Atlanta.
De Souza had 12 points and Bentley 10 to help the Dream to a 37-32 halftime lead. Little and Wright had eight each in the first half for the Storm.
The Dream had won six in a row before losing 94-72 last Tuesday at Minnesota and had beaten the Storm in their past five meetings.
Sparks 88, at Mercury 76: Candace Parker had 21 points, eight rebounds and five assists to lead Los Angeles (10-4) over Phoenix (8-7).
Nneka Ogwumike added 16 points and 13 rebounds for the Sparks.
Phoenix played its second consecutive game without No. 1 overall pick Brittney Griner, who has a sore left knee.
Diana Taurasi had 23 points, including three 3-pointers, for the Mercury.
At Sun 86, Silver Stars 84: Tina Charles had 20 points and 10 rebounds, and Allison Hightower scored 23 points to help Connecticut (4-9) rally in the fourth quarter to beat San Antonio (4-10).
Kara Lawson, playing her second game since returning from a knee injury, came off the bench and had 14 points and six assists for the Sun.
Jia Perkins had 23 points and seven rebounds for the Silver Stars and Danielle Robinson added 10 points and eight assists.
The Sun fell behind 67-59 in the fourth quarter before going on a 17-4 run. Hightower’s 3-pointer pushed Connecticut ahead 76-71 with four minutes remaining in the game.