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Liberty lose Sabrina Ionescu to ankle injury in second quarter, fall to Dream

Sabrina Ionescu #20 of the Liberty looks on

Sabrina Ionescu #20 of the Liberty looks on during the second half of a game against the Dallas Wings at Feld Entertainment Center on July 29, 2020 in Palmetto, Florida.  Credit: Getty Images/Julio Aguilar

BRADENTON, Fla.— Liberty top draft pick Sabrina Ionescu injured her ankle in the second quarter against Atlanta and did not return to action in the Liberty's 84-78 loss to the Dream on Friday night.

Ionescu, the No. 1 pick in April's draft, was bringing the ball up court and rolled her left ankle when she got tangled up with Atlanta's Betnijah Laney with about five minutes left in the opening half. She finished with 10 points on 4-of-5 shooting.

According to NBA TV, Ionescu sprained her ankle and underwent X-rays.

After the game, Liberty coach Walt Hopkins said Ionescu was still being evaluated.

Ionescu, who won AP All-American honors three times at Oregon, shattered the NCAA career triple-double mark (for both men and women) with 26 and became the first player in college history to have 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists.

She helped the Ducks win the Pac-12 regular-season and tournament titles as a senior while averaging 17.5 points, 9.1 assists and 8.6 rebounds. She was named the conference's most outstanding player of the tournament and of the regular season.

The 5-foot-11 guard was also named AP Player of the Year and won the Wooden Award, the Naismith Trophy and Wade Trophy.

Laney scored a career-high 30 points for the Dream. Rookie Chennedy Carter added 17 points and Monique Billings had eight points and 15 rebounds for Atlanta.

Laney's 3-pointer with two minutes left in the third quarter gave Atlanta a 14-point — their biggest of the game — but the Liberty (0-3) chipped away, trimming its deficit to 73-71 when Layshia Clarendon made a short jumper with 2:45 to play. Carter answered with a pull-up jumper and then Billings made two free throws and the Liberty got no closer.

Rookie Jazmine Jones scored a season-high 20 points to lead New York and Clarendon scored 16.

Laney made a pull-up jumper to pull Atlanta within two at halftime and then the Dream scored the first 13 second-half points to make it 54-43 midway through the third quarter.

New York Sports