Rhyne Howard finished with 36 points, but the Dream lost to the Wings 94-82 in the first game of their WNBA playoff series Friday night in Dallas.
The Dream are playing in the postseason for the first time since 2018.
Howard made 13 of 29 shots, including 8 of 15 from beyond the arc. Allisha Gray pitched in with 21 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Cheyenne Parker scored 11 on 5-of-16 shooting with eight rebounds, three assists, three steals and three blocks.
The fifth-seeded Dream face an elimination game in the best-of-3 series Tuesday night in Dallas. A win by the Dream would send the series to Atlanta for the third game Friday.
Satou Sabally had 32 points, Arike Ogunbowale scored 24 and Teaira McCowan added a double-double to help the Wings overcome a slow start.
Sabally notched a playoff-high for the fourth-seeded Wings, sinking 11 of 20 shots from the floor — with three 3-pointers — and all seven of her free throws. She also had five rebounds, four assists and four steals. Ogunbowale added nine rebounds, seven assists and four steals for the Wings, who went 3-0 against the Dream in the regular season. McCowan totaled 17 points — on 6-of-7 shooting — and 14 rebounds, including seven on offense. It was her second career postseason double-double.
Aari McDonald’s layup gave the Dream a 76-73 lead with 7:10 remaining in the game. Sabally buried a 3-pointer to tie the game, McCowan scored off a rebound and Dallas never trailed again.
The Wings trailed 36-21 after one quarter but rallied to tie it at 49 by halftime.