By Seth Dahle
Fresh off a come-from-behind victory over New York, the Seattle Storm will look to cap the weekend with another ‘W,’ as the team returns to the hardwood at KeyArena tomorrow against Indiana, with the tipoff set for 4 p.m. PDT.
Led by 22 second-half points from Sami Whitcomb, Seattle defeated New York, 87-81, to notch its best start (3-1) since the 2010 campaign. In addition, the Storm collected its first win over the Liberty at KeyArena since the 2012 season.
After falling behind by as many as 10 (63-53) in the third, Whitcomb changed the game, drilling three quick three’s to spark a 23-11 run. Whitcomb finished the contest 6-for-8 from deep, as the Storm tied a franchise high with 14 triples. Breanna Stewart posted her 13th-career double-double with 20 points and 12 boards, while Jewell Loyd added 16 points for Seattle.
For the second time this season, Seattle outscored its opponent by 11 or more at the line, as the Storm went 25-for-32 compared to a 10-for-14 clip by New York.
After battling Indiana on Sunday, Seattle will cap its five-game home stand on Saturday against Minnesota at 6 p.m. PDT.
AT A GLANCE: FEVER
In its last time out, Indiana (2-2) overcame a 14-point deficit to upset defending champion Los Angeles on Wednesday by a 93-90 margin. Marissa Coleman led the way with 19 points thanks to a game-high five three’s, while Candice Dupree added 18 points and eight boards on 8-for-13 shooting.
Indiana used a 10-0 run to open the third stanza to get back into the game, and Tiffany Mitchell made two free throws with 36.7 seconds left in the frame to give the Fever its first lead at 66-65. Indiana outscored previously unbeaten Los Angeles, 27-10, in the third quarter.
Four players average double figures for the Fever, led by Dupree’s 14.8 points and 6.5 rebounds per game. Mitchell comes off the bench to tally 12.3 points in just 21.5 minutes per affair, while Shenise Johnson and Briann January add 12 and 10.3 points per contest, respectively. As a team, Indiana records 79.5 points per game and is shooting 39.3 percent from beyond the arc, but the Fever yields 85.3 points per contest (worst in WNBA).
In the latest AP Power Poll, the Fever dropped from seventh to ninth after opening the season 1-2.
In its home opener vs. Indiana on May 14, Seattle collected its first win (87-82) over the Fever at KeyArena since the 2013 campaign, snapping a three-game skid. With 1:40 left to go, Stewart knocked down the go-ahead trey to put Seattle up two (79-77), and the Storm notched a defensive stop before Langhorne scored inside and Stewart came up with a big rejection to seal it. Loyd led the way with a season-high 27 points, while Langhorne and Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis added 17 and 12 points, respectively.
The Storm has been quite successful against the Fever in the Emerald City, posting a 12-5 record since its inaugural season in 2000.
Indiana leads the all-time series, 18-16, and Seattle hasn’t won two games in a single season against the Fever since the 2008 campaign, when it went 2-0. The Storm is looking to go 2-0 at home vs. Indiana for the first time in franchise history.
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