Caitlin Clark Highlights In The Win | WNBA Indiana Fever vs Atlanta Dream

Indiana Fever win over Atlanta Dream

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana barely avoided a nightmare loss to Atlanta, instead taking a 91-84 victory in the final seconds at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on Thursday night.

A 15-point lead melted into the Fever trailing late in the fourth quarter, but Aliyah Boston’s 27 points and 13 rebounds propelled Indiana to its fourth victory of the season.

Indiana is now 4-10, while Atlanta is 5-6.

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Here are three observations:

Strong first half gives Fever cushion

After Monday night’s loss to Connecticut, Fever coach Christie Sides stressed effort, defense, and spacing. The Fever, playing against the best team in the WNBA at the team, did not have the spacing to get through the Sun’s potent defense.

On Thursday against the Dream, the Fever offense clicked in the first half. Spacing has been something the Fever have been working on all season, and they cracked the code by putting their offense through the post.

Indiana’s offense was the most connected it had been all season, and that resulted in 33 points in the first 10 minutes — the Fever’s highest-scoring quarter of the season. The Fever had eight assists on 13 made baskets in the first half, varying their scoring — Katie Lou Samuelson hit back-to-back 3-pointers, while Boston scored the final seven points for the Fever in that quarter.

Indiana’s lead extended to 15 points, 59-44, by halftime — and Indiana needed every inch of that lead to get a victory.

Fever barely avoid nightmare loss

Atlanta outscored Indiana, 18-14, in the third quarter, then went on a 9-0 run to start the fourth to get within two points. Two free throws from Kelsey Mitchell at the 5-minute mark of the fourth finally gave Indiana its first points of the quarter, and Boston gave the Fever a three-point cushion with an easy layup.

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But the Dream had figured out how to exploit Indiana’s defense: draw fouls. Indiana could not seem to figure out how to defend without fouling in the fourth quarter, giving Atlanta non-contested, high percentage shots.

The Fever committed four shooting fouls in the first seven minutes of the fourth, and Caitlin Clark’s foul on Dream guard Haley Jones gave her two shots, which turned into a lead for the Dream — their first since the first quarter.

Boston was instrumental to keeping the Fever in the game. She single-handedly traded shots with the Dream, scoring eight straight points for Indiana late in the fourth.

A layup from Mitchell, another shot from Boston, and two free throws from Mitchell eventually sealed the seven-point victory, avoiding a nightmare loss.

Mitchell finished with 24 points.

Aliyah Boston finishes with new season high

Early foul trouble wasn’t going to stop Aliyah Boston. After fighting through multiple defenders for the Fever’s first basket of the game, the reigning Rookie of the Year picked up her second foul just four minutes into the first quarter.

She went to the bench with two fouls and two points, sitting for four minutes.

Then, after checking back in with two minutes left in the first quarter, she went to work. Boston scored seven points in a row for the Fever, outworking Dream defenders for an and-1 near the end of the quarter.

Between her broadcasting commitments, Boston said she put on a lot of muscle in the offseason to be able to compete with centers like the Dream’s Tina Charles, who is a 6-4 WNBA vet with over 12 years of experience in the league.

That extra muscle paid off Thursday; she matched her season-high of 17 points by halftime, shooting 7-of-12 from the field, while Charles only had two points.

Boston finished the game with a double-double: 27 points and 13 rebounds.

How many points did Caitlin Clark score?

Caitlin Clark had seven points on 3-of-11 shooting on Thursday night, as well as six assists, four rebounds and seven turnovers.