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Liberty clinches No. 3 seed with win over Wings in regular-season finale

Liberty center Tina Charles reacts against the Phoenix

Liberty center Tina Charles reacts against the Phoenix Mercury at Madison Square Garden on June 4, 2017. Photo Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

ARLINGTON, Texas — Tina Charles had 18 points and 18 rebounds to help the Liberty clinch the third seed in the playoffs with an 82-81 win over the Dallas Wings on Sunday and extend the team’s winning streak to 10 games.

The Liberty (22-12) matched the franchise record for longest winning streak and have a first-round bye.

“You control what you can control,” Liberty coach Bill Laimbeer said. “We’re just trying to peak at the right time heading into the playoffs.”

The seventh-seeded Wings (16-18) play at No. 6 Washington in a one-game playoff on Wednesday.

Trailing 82-79 after a Charles putback with 22.1 seconds to play, the Wings missed, but forced a turnover and Aerial Powers scored on a putback with 3.7 seconds left. When the Liberty inbounded the ball in the frontcourt after a timeout, they had a backcourt violation, giving Dallas one last shot. Skylar Diggins-Smith’s attempt from the three-point line bounced off the rim at the buzzer.

There were 12 ties and 10 lead changes in the game.

Epiphanny Prince led the Liberty with 20 points.

Glory Johnson led the Wings with 17 points, Diggins-Smith had 16 and Powers 14.

New York Sports