Sabrina Ionescu flirted with another triple-double Friday night for the New York Liberty, who never trailed in an 89-77 win over the Atlanta Dream in College Park, Ga.
Ionescu, who recorded her second career triple-double on June 12, finished with 21 points, nine rebounds and eight assists on Friday for the Liberty (8-10). New York improved to 7-3 this month.
Natasha Howard put up 19 points and 10 rebounds while Marine Johannes added 17 points for the Liberty.
AD Durr scored a game-high 23 points for the Dream (8-9), who have dropped five of their past six games. Rhyne Howard scored 19 points and pulled down eight rebounds, and Aari McDonald added 12 points.
In the first quarter, Ionescu scored the final six points -- via a 3-pointer and a three-point play -- of a 12-0 run that gave the Liberty a 17-4 lead. The Dream went 0-for-5 from the field with a turnover during the New York surge.
The Liberty were on top 33-16 at the end of the first and took their biggest lead when Sami Whitcomb opened the second quarter with a layup. The Dream chipped away and cut the deficit to single digits when Durr scored five points in a 7-0 lead that narrowed New York's lead to 42-34.
The Dream trailed 53-43 at the half and reduced the Liberty's lead to eight points four times in the third before a pair of free throws by Cheyenne Parker cut the gap to 63-59 with 2:10 left.
Beatrice Mompremier drained a pair of free throws to pull Atlanta within 68-64 at the end of the third. Parker and Durr each missed jumpers in the first minute of the fourth, after which Crystal Dangerfield sank a 3-pointer for New York.
The Dream pulled within two possessions twice more, the last time at 74-68 on a jumper by Durr with 6:12 left. Whitcomb answered with a 3-pointer, and the Liberty led by at least nine the rest of the way.
--Field Level Media