Game 2: Lynx 101 – Dream 95


MENZIE HENDERSON
Lynx Writer


Box Score

How it Happened
Between the matchup of Seimone Augustus and Angel McCoughtry, it wasn’t about which superstar was going to score the most points; it was about who was going to deliver the final blow.

Augustus dropped 15 of her 36 points in the fourth quarter alone to propel the Minnesota Lynx over the Atlanta Dream 101-95 on Wednesday night.

"I told our team that this is my fifth Finals that I've been in so I have seen a lot of playoff games, but I have not seen the type of performance that Seimone Augustus gave us tonight. It's the best individual performance that I've seen," Lynx head coach Cheryl Reeve said of Augustus' stellar night.

Minnesota finished the game on a 20-10 run behind Augustus and Lindsay Whalen over the final five minutes to come away with Game 2 of the WNBA Finals.

The Lynx are now just one win away from claiming its first title in franchise history.

With just over a minute remaining, Augustus stood at the free-throw line and received chants of ‘MVP’ from the 15,124 strong at Target Center. If the Finals ended tonight, Augustus would undoubtedly receive the individual honor, but she says that’s not at all what she’s here for.

"With them chanting MVP, it's a great thing but I just want to get the title," Augustus said. "That's what is in front of me right now. The MVP award is over with and done, I mean, you can talk about the WNBA Finals MVP, but that's not of my concern. I want the title."

McCoughtry poured in a WNBA Finals record 38 points to lead the Atlanta Dream, but it wasn’t enough as the team now heads home just one loss away from their second straight Finals disappointment.

Leader of the Pack
Similar to Game 1, the Lynx relied on Augustus to answer McCoughtry’s scoring onslaught. Augustus responded to the challenge to perfection, scoring at will and demanding the ball in her hands. She called for isolations and attacked her opponent throughout the night, using her silky smooth crossover to glide past defenders and finish with a knockdown jumper.

"When someone has it going like Seimone did tonight, you want to get her the ball," Lynx point guard Whalen said of feeding the hot hand. "She was unbelievable tonight."

Notable Performance
When the Lynx and Augustus needed an extra scoring boost in the second half, the floor general came up in the clutch. Lindsay Whalen put the Lynx up 90-85 late in the ballgame with a fade away jumper followed by an old fashioned three-point play that ignited Target Center. Whalen finished the game with 13 points and four assists.

Unsung Heroes
Taj McWilliams-Franklin went down with an injury late in the third quarter and was forced to remain sidelined. But before the Lynx could notice the absence of their veteran center, reserves Jess Adair and Amber Harris filled in admirably by providing big shots in crucial moments. Adair finished with 13 points and three blocks, while Harris added five huge second half points. Despite missing the fourth, McWilliams-Franklin contributed 10 points and five boards.

"Really happy with Jess [Adair], she made her free-throws, rebounded, defended with confidence...it's just so nice for Taj and Rebekkah [Brunson] to have somebody that comes in with a different, more of a power game. She was really productive for us tonight," Reeve explained.

Looking Ahead
GAME 1: MIN 88 - ATL 74 | Game Recap
GAME 2: MIN 101 - ATL 95 | Game Recap
GAME 3: Fri. Oct. 7 8:00 PM | TIX
Minnesota will travel to Atlanta for Game 3 on Friday night, looking to sweep the WNBA Finals series 3-0.

"We've still got some work to do. We've got one more game to win and the legacy isn't complete until you're holding that trophy," Augustus stated.


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