Tiffany Hayes’ Season Debut Fuels a 92-81 OT Win for Atlanta

The Atlanta Dream got a big win over the New York Liberty on Thursday night. Atlanta won the 92-81 in overtime. New York was down by 13 points in the fourth quarter but went on a 17-0 run to take the lead.

New York led 79-76 with 7.5 seconds left when Erica Wheeler hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key at the buzzer to send the game to overtime. “Absolutely not, it was not that. The shot was definitely gonna go to AD, Wheeler said, but as a point guard, it was time awareness, I looked up there was 2.3 [seconds], made a basketball move, and made the shot.” In overtime, Atlanta outscored New York 13-2 to win the game.

Tiffany Hayes played in her first game back, and she played well; Hayes scored 21 points on 8-15 shooting from the field and also hit 4-6 three-point shots. Hayes scored the first seven points in overtime. She played with no minutes restrictions and looked like Hayes did not miss a beat.

“I ain’t know I was gonna be out there as much as I was out there Hayes said, But like I told you before the game, I’m here to do whatever my team needs and one of my roles is to be the best two-way player. So I just try to do that to the best of my ability.”

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Wheeler and Rhyne Howard scored ten points apiece, but Atlanta’s bench played well in this game; they scored 32 points. Kristy Wallace led all bench scorers with ten points, Aari McDonald added nine points, and Kia Vaughn scored eight points. When your starters are struggling, it is good when your bench shows up to pick up the scoring.

Stefanie Dolson led the way for Liberty with 20 points and added seven rebounds. Sabrina Ionescu scored 17 points, added 13 rebounds, and dished out seven assists. Ionescu played well but could not bring it home for the Liberty.
Both teams struggled shooting from the field, with Atlanta shooting 38.3% and New York 39.4%.

Hayes proved to be the difference in the game.

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LaMarr Fields has been sports writing for four-plus years now. He is a very dedicated writer that knows sports. LaMarr is from California and has dreams of being a writer full-time. You can follow LaMarr on twitter at @raiderway83.