Mercury fall in Atlanta for 3rd loss in a row

BY foxsports • September 7, 2016

ATLANTA -- Angel McCoughtry had 27 points and eight rebounds, Tiffany Hayes scored five points in the final 30 seconds and the Atlanta Dream beat the Phoenix Mercury 91-87 on Tuesday night.

McCoughtry made a contested layup and hit a long jumper over Brittney Griner on consecutive Atlanta possessions for an 84-77 lead with 1:51 left. But Diana Taurasi answered with back-to-back 3-pointers to pull Phoenix to 84-83.

Hayes converted a three-point play with 24 seconds left for an 89-85 lead and she made two free throws with 15 seconds left to seal it.

Bria Holmes added 18 points and Hayes finished with 14 points for Atlanta (15-14), which is ranked fifth in the AP power poll.

The Dream led 42-35 in the first half behind 16 points by McCoughtry.

Taurasi made four 3-pointers and scored 23 points for sixth-ranked Phoenix (13-17), which lost its third straight. Griner added 21 points, five rebounds and six blocks.

The Mercury are seventh in WNBA playoff seedings -- with the top eight teams advancing to the postseason -- but they have little margin for error. Seattle (12-17), Washington (11-17) and Connecticut (11-18) are all in striking distance with less than two weeks remaining.

The Mercury have four games left to play -- starting with a rematch against the Dream on Sunday in Phoenix. The game can be seen on FOX Sports Arizona Plus.

They finish up with a road game at Los Angeles, home against Seattle and away at San Antonio.