ATLANTA (AP) - Rookie Shoni Schimmel scored a season-high 24 points and the Atlanta Dream beat the Phoenix Mercury 96-82 Wednesday night to clinch the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference.
Tiffany Hayes had 19 points and Aneika Henry added 15 points and 12 rebounds to help Atlanta (18-14) snap a five-game losing streak. The Dream, who averaged 71.4 points during their skid, were without leading-scorer Angel McCoughtry for the second straight game due to tendinitis in her feet.
Erin Phillips scored 21 points to lead the Mercury (27-5), who have already secured the top spot in the West and home-court advantage throughout the WNBA playoffs. Shay Murphy had 11 points and Tiffany Bias added 10.
Most Valuable Player contender Diana Taurasi and starting guard Penny Taylor were healthy scratches for the Mercury, who won 21 of their previous 22 games.