75 - 82 Final
  for this game

McCoughtry, Castro Marques lead Dream past Liberty

Jul 25, 2010 - 10:43 PM ATLANTA (AP) -- After a winless four-game road trip, the Atlanta Dream got a much-needed win back at home.

Angel McCoughtry scored 19 of her 28 points in the second half, and the Dream went on a late 11-0 run to snap their skid with an 82-75 victory over the New York Liberty on Sunday. Iziane Castro Marques had 16 of her 21 points in the second half, including eight in the decisive final streak.

"I was starting to see that look of doubt on girls' faces," said McCoughtry, who also had 10 rebounds. "I couldn't let us lose again. We had to win."

Erika DeSouza added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Atlanta (15-9), while McCoughtry also had 10 rebounds and six assists.

Atlanta moved into second place in the Eastern Conference, one game behind Indiana and half-game ahead of third-place Washington.

Cappie Pondexter scored 28 points to lead New York (11-11), which fell into a last-place tie with Chicago - one game behind fourth-place Connecticut. Leilani Mitchell scored 13 points, Plenette Pierson added 12 and Taj McWilliams-Franklin had 11.

The Liberty led 72-71 with less than 3 minutes remaining, but didn't score again until Mitchell hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer. New York missed four field goals and turned the ball over twice during the drought.

"We kind of lost it the final 5 minutes," Pondexter said. "We made some mistakes and had a couple of turnovers, which led to transition baskets for them. That's what they're good at."

Pondexter scored 14 points in the third quarter, but had just three in the fourth.

"We were hoping that she'd get tired and cool off," McCoughtry said. "I think they all got a little tired."

The Dream, who fell out of first place in the East during the losing streak, had a 36-26 advantage in rebounding.

"They are the best rebounding team in the league," Liberty coach Anne Donovan said. "Our goals coming in were to try to contain them in transition and try to keep them off the backboards. We didn't do either of those things well."

Castro Marques' jumper gave the Dream the lead for good with 2:39 to go, and McCoughtry's jumper made it 75-72 about 1 1/2 minutes later. Castro Marques hit a jumper with 40 seconds remaining, and then added two free throws less than 5 seconds later.

After Shalee Lehning made a free throw with 19 seconds left, Castro Marques had a layup 12 seconds later.

"When you lose four games in a row, your confidence is shaken a little," Atlanta coach Marynell Meadors said. "For us to come back and play the way we played and refuse to lose shows the caliber of team we have."

The Dream trailed by 10 points late in the second quarter before rallying to tie the score at 51-all on McCoughtry's 3 with 3:42 left in the third. Castro Marques put them ahead with a jumper nearly a minute later.

Pondexter had a 3 and a three-point play to give New York a 59-56 lead with about 1 minute left in the period. McCoughtry, who had 14 points in the third quarter, followed with a jumper and Lyttle's tip-in gave the Dream a 60-59 lead heading to the fourth.

The Liberty opened the second quarter with a 10-0 run to take a 28-15 lead on McWilliams-Franklin's jumper near the midpoint of the period. Pierson's jumper stretched the advantage to 37-27 with 2:19 left in the first half.

After Atlanta pulled within six, Mitchell hit a 3 and McWilliams-Franklin made a free throw to restore the Liberty's 10-point lead.