Notes and Quotes: Stars rout Dream 102-85, Atlanta stays in East cellar
San Antonio stretched its home win-streak to six with an 102-85 victory over the Atlanta Dream Wednesday night at Freeman Coliseum. Kayla McBride had a stellar night for the Stars with 25 points. Five other Stars players scored in double figures: Jayne Appel (15 points, 8 rebounds), Sophia Young-Malcolm (13 points, five rebounds), Jia Perkins 11 points, 6 rebounds), Danielle Robinson (10 points, 12 assists), and Valeriane Ayayi (10 points).
It was Ayayi’s first game with the Stars. The team signed the French forward earlier this week. Jia Perkins was also back from injury. The Stars were without Dearica Hamby (left ankle injury), Alex Montgomery (right knee injury) and Danielle Adams (three-game suspension), but still managed to dominate the Dream.
Angel McCoughtry led the Dream with 14 points. Her points earned her the 24th place on the all-time WNBA scoring list tallying 4,024 points and passing Alana Beard (4,014). She also recorded her 17th consecutive game scoring in double-figures. Matee Ajavon recorded 13 points and led all players in steals with three. Reshanda Gray and Shoni Schimmel added 13 and 12 points, respectively. Schimmel led the Dream in assists with seven.
The Stars have won six straight home games twice before in franchise history in 2000 and 2008. The record home-win streak is nine set in 2012. The win snapped a three-game win streak Atlanta carried in the series (since 2014).
The Stars host the Washington Mystics on Friday. Atlanta heads to Minnesota to face the Lynx on the same day.
- All five San Antonio starters scored in double-figures. The Stars totaled 102 points, six shy from a franchise scoring record of 108 points, set in 2010 against Phoenix.
- The Stars outscored the Dream 32-15 in the third quarter, marking a new opponent-high in scoring in the third quarter against Atlanta. The home team also set a new second-half scoring-high against Atlanta with 55 points. The Stars set a new high in assists against Atlanta with 27.
- Coming off a notable performance in the WNBA All-Star game, Kayla McBride shot 70.0 percent from the field, 60.0 percent from three-point range, and 100.0 percent from the line (8-8).
- Jayne Appel captured a career-high 15 points. Her previous high, 13, was set against Phoenix in 2013. She also added eight rebounds and led all players with two blocks.
- Danielle Robinson earned her second double-double on the year with 10 points, 12 assists – one shy from her career-high and a San Antonio franchise high – and 1 blocked shot.
- Kayla Alexander tied her season-high in scoring with eight points. She also added five boards.
Stars head coach Dan Hughes
(On the game…)
“I thought that we really came out and had a good third quarter. And it was one of those days that we really shot the ball well. We have been adding pieces back, so our capability of shooting the ball is enhanced right now. Good team victory. I thought there were several pieces that really helped us throughout our lineup.”
(On players coming back from injury and making an immediate impact…)
“It has been such an ever-changing year you know, I’m not surprised by anything to be honest with you. I’ve seen the good, I’ve seen the bad, I’ve seen the ugly, but today was the good.”
(On the post play in the game…)
“We shoot it better now, so they have got a little more space. I think the ability for us to play to our post players, and in an aggressive nature with the ball; it hasn’t been lost on this team. Some of our better moments have come when we have pursued both of those things.”
(On Jayne Appel and Kayla Alexander’s aggressiveness in the game…)
“Weren’t they? Oh that was fun to watch. It was fun to watch. I think it is a period where if they’ll work hard, we’ll get them the ball. I thought that we shared the ball really well today. So you get post players that are motivated, and they’re working to get open, our people did a great job getting the ball to them.”
(On whether they talked about distributing the ball before the game, or it just happened in game…)
“It’s not so much Atlanta, it’s just kind of what we want to do with the Stars.”
(On how dangerous the team is with the post play and ability to shoot from the outside…)
“If you look at us at the beginning of the year, we were 12th in points in the paint and now we’re seventh. I think pursuing scoring in the paint allows space. I know we’re 12th in three point shooting, but I have got a feeling that we’re going to get a little better there. Some of our people are coming back.”
Stars guard Kayla McBride
(On her first All-Star appearance…)
“It was a lot fun. I kind of went in unexpected. I got the call on my way home actually. It was just a really good experience. The West team was really cool. It was nice to be there with D-Rob (Danielle Robinson. I just kind of tried to take it in, have fun, and the game turned out well for us too, so it was a good time.”
(On their performance now that core pieces are returning…)
“I think with Jia (Perkins) back it kind of gives everybody a little more comfort. I think we are just starting to work with each other more, and Jayne (Appel) has started to get back, and things like that. I think we are really coming together every day. We have been through a lot with injuries and things like that, so yeah it is good to see us coming together now.”
(On team defense…)
“I think it has been a big emphasis for us, especially on this team with Angel (McCoughtry). Their guards like to penetrate so much. I think we did a really good job; our posts did a really good job. We are just communicating better. Like I said, it just comes with us jelling and finding our chemistry and things like that and showing our defense today.”
Stars center Jayne Appel
(On her performance and the post play in the game…)
“It is just important for us to establish a presence inside, and really get those points, and step up in our position where we needed it. We needed it from the points in the paint tonight.”
(On the scoring in recent games…)
“I think just players coming back from injury, and people kind of just stepping up into roles with people missing. When we get more people back and healthy, it is really kind of all putting pieces together and helping us.”
Dream head coach Michael Cooper
(On Dream’s performance…)
“I thought it was a very poorly played game by us. Our game plan was on point, but when you’re playing against a team like this that really doesn’t have anything to play for, but for pride and to see who’s going to make the roster next year, are the deadliest teams to play. Dan Hughes made some moves and has some great pieces. All the Stars are doing are playing hard. I thought they played and extremely good game. Any time you give up 102 points and you’re the one getting 102 points, that’s always a good game.”
(On the Dream defensive play…)
“It wasn’t a good offensive performance when you put up 85 and they get 102, that’s bad defense on our part. Again, the Stars played well and executed well and hit shots. When you run your offense like that, good things are going to happen. You can’t blame anything on the officials, the teams that get calls are teams that make things happen on the offensive end and we didn’t do that as well. It starts with our defense though, we’re a better defensive team and the good thing about basketball is that there’s always another game and now we have another game to play.”
(On playing Minnesota and Phoenix the next two games…)
“It doesn’t matter who we’re playing, it’s time to get better. We got to go out and play the way we know we can play. When we do that, we’re a very good basketball team. We haven’t shown that lately, but we know we can do that and it’s going to take work. We had two players come in through major trade and I think they’re going to fit with us so in essence, we’re a new team trying to find ourselves after the all star break. Good thing is, we have 16 games left. ”
Dream forward Angel McCoughtry
(On Dream overall performance…)
“Today was just a tough game. The Stars had some great shots and defensively we just have to do better.
(On what the Dream need to work on defensively…)
“Pick and rolls and overall just being more aggressive. We can’t have game like this, it’s unacceptable. We have to come with more energy and focused. We have more games so we’re going to bounce back.”