INDIANAPOLIS (WNBA) - Tamika Catchings recently missed out on a second straight WNBA MVP award but no one is playing better in the post-season than the three-time USA Olympic champion.
The 33-year-old forward followed up her 25-point, 13-rebound and three-steal effort for Indiana in their 103-88 Game 2 win at Atlanta in the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals with another solid performance on Tuesday to lead the Fever past the Dream.
Indiana will now take on the Connecticut Sun, who are led by league MVP and Catchings’ fellow USA international, Tina Charles.
The Defensive Player of the Year in the WNBA, Catchings had four blocks and three steals to go with her 16 points and 11 rebounds on Tuesday.
Indiana dominated the boards, out-rebounding Atlanta, 46-25.
Erlana Larkins had 20 rebounds to go with her 16 points for Indiana.
"We knew they were going to be physical, but we stepped up to the challenge and were right back physical with them, and people don't expect that from us," Catchings said.
Another side stacked with USA gold-medal winners from this summer's London Games, the Minnesota Lynx, scraped a 73-72 home triumph over Seattle at the Target Center.
Seattle had a chance to win at the end but Australia international Lauren Jackson's turnaround jumper from the baseline stayed out.
That means that Lindsay Whalen, Maya Moore and Seimone Augustus - all players in the Americans' triumphant squad in London - will take on the Los Angeles Sparks in the Western Conference Finals.
Rebekkah Brunson, who didn't make the final cut for London but is making a strong case for representing the USA in Turkey at the 2014 FIBA World Championship for Women, had 16 points and nine rebounds for the defending champions Lynx.
She helped limit Jackson to just nine points in Game 3 and 10 of 36 shooting in the series.
"I'm trying to do whatever I can do to put my team in the best situation to win," she said.
"It's not about me. We played an amazing three games together and we all got it done collectively, together."