WASHINGTON, July 30, 2006 (Ticker) -- DeLisha Milton-Jones and the Washington Mystics are back in the playoffs.

Milton-Jones scored 22 of her career-high 26 points in the second half as the Mystics clinched a postseason berth with a 78-73 triumph over the Charlotte Sting.

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It was the third consecutive victory for Washington (15-13), which clinched the fourth playoff berth in team history and the second in the last three years.

An eight-year veteran, Milton-Jones hauled in nine rebounds, shot 7-of-11 from the floor and made all 11 free throws. Nikki Teasley scored 14 points and Chasity Melvin chipped in 12 for the Mystics, who improved their home record to 11-4.

After enduring three sluggish quarters Sunday, Washington erupted in the final session and eliminated fifth-place Charlotte (8-20) from contention for the fourth and final postseason spot in the Eastern Conference.

The Mystics trailed by one with 6:15 remaining when Milton-Jones knocked down a jumper to give her squad a 64-63 lead. Teasley drilled a 3-pointer 75 seconds later, pushing the advantage to 67-63.

The Sting drew within 73-70 on Tangela Smith's layup with 2:25 left, but Milton-Jones nailed a 3-pointer with 90 seconds remaining to push the lead to 76-70.

Rookie Monique Currie scored 16 points and reserve Kelly Mazzante added 12 for Charlotte, which has lost four of its last five.