Jewell Loyd Scores Team-High 20 Points; Seattle’s Record Stands at 10-16
MINNEAPOLIS – Two days after defeating the league-leading Los Angeles Sparks, the Seattle Storm went toe-to-toe with the defending champion Minnesota Lynx on Sunday at the Target Center. Seattle led at halftime and kept pace with Minnesota in the third quarter, but the Lynx pulled away for a 92-80 win.
The Storm drops to 10-16 and is tied for the eighth and final playoff spot with eight games remaining.
Five players scored in double figures for Seattle, led by the 20 points of Jewell Loyd on 8-of-17 shooting. Ramu Tokashiki had 13 points – two shy of her season high – while Sue Bird and Crystal Langhorne each scored 11. Breanna Stewart added 10 points for the Storm, which finishes 0-4 against Minnesota in the regular season.
In a game featuring half of the gold-medal winning USA women’s basketball team, Olympian Lindsay Whalen led all scorers with 24 points for the Lynx. Fellow Olympian Seimone Augustus added 18 points.
Sylvia Fowles scored six points as part of an 11-0 start for Minnesota in the first quarter, and the Lynx maintained a double-digit edge late in the frame. But Loyd scored nine of her 20 points in the quarter, helping the Storm climb back into the game.
Seattle then started the second quarter with a dominant run of its own, a 12-4 spurt boosted by eight straight points from Tokashiki. The Storm led 33-30 at that point and would hold a 47-42 advantage at halftime after closing the quarter on a 7-0 run.
After a 26-15 second quarter in favor of the Storm, the third period was just the opposite. Minnesota outscored Seattle 32-18 as Whalen started to impose her will. The teams went back-and-forth with a number of lead changes early in the quarter, and Minnesota took its first lead of the half on a Whalen layup four minutes in. The Lynx used an 11-2 spurt to take a 73-65 edge into the final frame.
Whalen scored eight of her 24 points in the final 10 minutes, helping Minnesota maintain a sizeable lead throughout the quarter.
The Storm will look to bounce back in a home clash with the Dallas Wings on Wednesday at 7 p.m. PT.