September 11, 2015 – Shavonte Zellous had 14 points and five assists as the Indiana Fever beat the Atlanta Dream 75-68 to snap a three-game road losing streak.
ATLANTA – Playing without starters Tamika Catchings and Briann January, the Indiana Fever put five players in double figures and used a key fourth quarter stretch to get past the Atlanta Dream, 75-67.
Indiana scored 10 straight points after a 61-61 deadlock midway through the fourth, getting four points from rookie Natalie Achonwa and a 3-pointer from Jeanette Pohlen to spark the run. Shenise Johnson’s free throw gave the Fever their largest lead of the game, 10, with just over two minutes remaining.
Photo Gallery: Fever 75, Dream 67 »»
The Dream got within 5, but Indiana escaped to halt a two-game slide and maintain sole possession of third place in the WNBA’s Eastern Conference. Indiana can clinch the No. 3 seed in next week’s first-round of the playoffs with a win in its season finale Sunday against the New York Liberty.
Shavonte Zellous shot 5-of-8 from the floor and was perfect on four free throws to pace Indiana with 14 points off the bench. Achonwa came off the bench to score 10 with a career-high nine rebounds. Johnson scored 13 for the Fever while former University of Maryland stars Marissa Coleman and Lynetta Kizer each scored 10.
“We got production from everybody that stepped on the floor,” said Stephanie White who became the fifth rookie head coach in WNBA history with 19 or more wins. “What really stood out for me was that we got 20 assists on 29 baskets. That’s sharing the basketball and playing well as a team.”
Rebounding from consecutive losses, she added, “Tonight was a good first step. We got better defensively and a whole lot of people produced. Shenise played well and Zellous gave us a big game. Achonwa stepped up and Pohlen gave us some good minutes and hit some big shots.”
After trailing early while using its 10th different starting lineup this season, Indiana took its first lead on Pohlen’s first 3-pointer with 3:26 left in the first half, and after Angel McCoughtry tied the score in the half’s final minute, Johnson hit a trey of her own for a 3-point Fever margin at intermission, 38-35.
Sancho Lyttle led the Dream with 19 points and eight rebounds. McCoughtry added 11 and Matee Ajavon had 10.
The Fever close the regular season Sunday at 5 p.m., at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, against the East-leading Liberty.