Detroit Keeps Atlanta Winless, 100-92

Shock 100, Dream 92 (F)
Kara Braxton scored a career-best 26 points and grabbed nine rebounds Sunday to help the Detroit Shock keep the Atlanta Dream winless with a 100-92 victory Sunday night.

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., June 29 (AP) -- Despite being short-handed, Kara Braxton wasn't going to let the Detroit Shock lose to another Eastern Conference cellar dweller.

Braxton scored a career-high 26 points Sunday and had nine rebounds to help the injury-depleted Shock keep the Atlanta Dream winless with a 100-92 victory.

The Shock (12-5) moved into a tie with Connecticut for the conference lead, while the expansion Dream extended their WNBA-record losing streak to 15 games.

"It's the best game she's played in three years,'' coach Bill Laimbeer said of Braxton, the reserve center who scored seven points during a third-quarter run that gave the Shock the lead for good.

"She had the patience out there and gutted it out through her tiredness.''

Katie Smith added 24 points and Deanna Nolan had 18 points and tied her career-high with 11 assists for Detroit, which was missing starters Cheryl Ford (knee) and Elaine Powell (foot) and key reserve Plenette Pierson (knee).

"It was one of those games where everyone had to do whatever they could do,'' added Lamimbeer, who used just eight players a night after Detroit fell at Chicago, the conference's second-worst team.

Atlanta (0-15) got a career-high 26 points from Tamera Young and 22 from Betty Lennox as it added to the league's record for futility. Ivory Latta added 18 points.

The Dream lost its 14th straight game Friday at Connecticut to break the record of 13 set by the Shock in 2002 and Chicago in 2006, their first season in the league.

The teams were tied at 51 at intermission and at 60 late in the third quarter when the Shock went on a 13-3 run. Braxton had seven points during the streak, which gave the Detroit some breathing room.

"We knew we were down some players, so we all had to step up,'' Braxton said. "It took us a while to get into it, but once we got into a flow we put all the pieces together.''

Atlanta made six 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and got as close as 88-85. Detroit answered with consecutive baskets from Braxton and Tasha Humphrey, and Alexis Hornbuckle made a 3-pointer with a minute to play to seal it.

"They rebounded well and we didn't have our rotations right,'' Young said. "They executed their offense.''

The Dream stayed close by going 14-for-28 from behind the 3-point arc.

Detroit's Ford, the league's third-leading rebounder, missed her first game of the season. Laimbeer said he wasn't sure if the four-time All-Star selection would be ready to play when the Shock travel to San Antonio on Tuesday.

Powell and Pierson are day to day.Braxton had seven points during the streak. Atlanta made six 3-pointers in the fourth quarter and got as close as 88-85 before Detroit pulled away.

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