It was déjà vu all over again for the Dream against the Sky.

Coming off an 81-75 Sunday loss to New York in which Atlanta trailed 60-59 heading into the fourth quarter, the Dream found itself in a similar situation on Tuesday.

Chicago held a 66-64 lead over Atlanta with 10 minutes to play and Chennedy Carter and Angel Reese helped the Sky outscore the Dream 19-13 in the fourth quarter to earn an 85-77 win over Atlanta at Gateway Center Arena.

Atlanta (7-11) has lost nine of its last 12 and hasn’t won a home game since June 16.

It was the first time Chicago (7-11) beat Atlanta since July 12, 2022, and the Sky snapped a five-game losing streak against the Dream.

Carter scored a game-high 26 points, which is her highest single-game total this season. She went on a game-winning 6-0 run with less than two minutes left in regulation. Carter’s fall-away jumper, which completed her personal run, was the dagger as it gave Chicago an 82-77 lead with 31.7 to play.

Reese had her 11th double-double of the season with 12 points and she tallied a career-high 19 rebounds.

“Tough loss for us today,” Dream coach Tanisha Wright said. “I can take a lot of credit on myself. I probably should have changed some things up defensively. Especially with Carter kind of just putting her head down and going.”

Atlanta Dream guard Jordin Canada (3) drives against Chicago Sky forward Isabelle Harrison (20) during the second half. (Hyosub Shin / AJC)


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Atlanta shot 51.4% (18 of 35 overall, 4 of 8 from long range) in the first half but cooled down mightily in the second half. The Dream shot 36.4% and went 3 of 14 from long range over the final 20 minutes.

“I thought in the fourth quarter we didn’t keep our composure and find the right shots in the right opportunities,” Wright said. “That’s more of a reflection on me for not getting us poised and composed to be able to find those things. We [have to] work on getting better as players – me as a coach – so when we get in those situations again, we can have a different outcome.”

Atlanta committed a season-high 19 turnovers and Chicago scored 22 points off turnovers. The Dream’s previous season-high in turnovers was 17 against Washington on May 29. Atlanta has turned the ball over 10 times or more in every game this season.

“I think we have to do a better job understanding that we want to play fast and we want to play with pace,” Wright said. “In the last three games we’ve been playing that way. But with that, you still need to be able to take care of the ball. Those are opportunities and shots on goal that we’re not getting. We had 68 field-goal attempts with [19] turnovers. Take that down to even 10, that’s eight more field-goal attempts you have.”

The Dream, which shoots at about 80% from the line as a team, was uncharacteristically cold from the line with a 10 of 16 (62.5%) performance.

“Those are giving points [away],” Wright said. “We [have to] take our time. [Allisha Gray] missed two tonight. She’s typically, career-wise, a high-70s, low-80 percent free throw shooter. We just have to take our time. That’s a mental thing.”

On a positive note, Atlanta won the rebounding battle 37-34 in large part due to Tina Charles’ double-double of 19 points and 14 rebounds.

“I thought the guards did a good job of coming in to help,” Wright said. “Tina obviously has been big on the boards and continues to be big on the boards. Naz [Hillmon] came in and got some rebounds, especially in that second quarter. When we play teams like this who are really big on the glass, our guards have to help rebound.”

South Carolina coach Dawn Staley attends the game at the Gateway Center Arena on July 2, 2024, in Atlanta. (Hyosub Shin / AJC)


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Atlanta also accumulated 27 assists compared to Chicago’s 20. Gray tallied four of those assists and she scored 19 points. Jordin Canada led the team in assists with seven.

“I thought they did a great job of moving the ball,” Wright said. “Especially early on at times. We’re [going to] need that. That means everyone was touching [the ball], everyone had opportunities. When we were playing in transition, I thought our post did a good job of finding cutters on the back side tonight.”

The Dream hits the road for a three-game swing against Dallas (Friday), Connecticut (Sunday) and Chicago July 10.