LAS VEGAS -- — Kelsey Plum scored 18 of her 22 points in the second half, A’ja Wilson had 24 points and 14 rebounds, and the Las Vegas Aces held off the Atlanta Dream 97-90 on Tuesday night.
Las Vegas (24-10) pulled within one game of first-place Chicago with two games to play, including hosting the Sky on Thursday. Atlanta (14-20) sits in eighth place, a half-game ahead of Minnesota for the final playoff spot.
Las Vegas opened the fourth quarter on a 16-4 run to build a 78-69 lead, but Atlanta responded by making a 3-pointer on three straight possessions to tie it at 78. Atlanta rookie Naz Hillmon completed a three-point play to cap the 14-4 run, giving Atlanta an 83-82 lead.
Aari McDonald made a open 3-pointer in transition after a Las Vegas turnover to get Atlanta within 91-90, but she missed one two possessions later and had to foul Chelsea Gray with 21.5 seconds left. Gray made both free throws for a two-possession lead, and Wilson sealed it with a block with 8.7 left.
Gray also scored 22 points and Jackie Young added 20 for Las Vegas. Wilson scored 18 points in the first half as Las Vegas led 47-44.
Erica Wheeler and Maya Caldwell each scored 17 points for Atlanta. McDonald added 16 points, and Cheyenne Parker and Rhyne Howard each scored 14.
Howard made her first 3-pointer, in five attempts, midway through the fourth quarter to set a WNBA record for 3-pointers by a rookie with 77. The previous record of 76 was set in 2002 Tamika Catchings.
- Jeff Smith
- Isaac Barnett
- Sha'Rae Mitchell