SEATTLE – The Seattle Storm (3-2) handed the Minnesota Lynx (3-1) their first loss of the season, outlasting the four-time champions at home, 84-77. Seattle, which was held to 61 points on 36.4 percent shooting last Wednesday in Minneapolis, poured in 25 points in the first quarter. Sylvia Fowles was matched up against 6-foot-6 Mercedes Russell, who was making her first career start. Joining Russell in the Storm starting lineup was Alysha Clark, who had not dressed in the teams’ first meeting this season.
Though Seattle led by as many as 12 points in the third quarter, Minnesota was able to close the gap thanks to 15 second-half points from Napheesa Collier. Damiris Dantas hit a three-pointer with 4:12 left in the game to give Minnesota a one-point edge, but Jewell Loyd countered with a bank shot, kicking off a 10-2 run to the final buzzer. Loyd led the team with 19 points, while Natasha Howard contributed 12 points and six rebounds. Seattle finished the night shooting 59.3 percent from the field, its best single-game mark since a franchise-record outing in 2017. Seattle also had success off the glass, holding Minnesota to just 17 boards, its lowest mark in franchise history.
KEY STATS OF THE GAME
- Seattle shot 59.3 percent from the field, its best mark in a single game since setting a franchise record with a 61.5 field goal percentage (40-65 FG) vs. Dallas on July 28, 2017.
- The Storm went on a 10-2 run in the final 3:48 of the game to pull ahead of the Lynx.
- The Lynx finished with just 17 total rebounds, the lowest mark in a single game in franchise history. Their previous low of 18 came on Aug. 23, 2005 at Los Angeles. Minnesota averaged 41.3 rebounds per game through its first three contests of the 2019 season.
- Appearing in her 29th WNBA game, Mercedes Russell made her first career start. She finished the night with four points on 2-of-2 shooting and grabbed four rebounds.
- Jewell Loyd hit a bank shot with 3:48 left in the game to put the Storm ahead for good. She finished with a team-high 17 points on 7-of-14 shooting and added three rebounds.
- In 27 minutes with Natasha Howard on the floor, the Storm outscored the Lynx by 13 points. The recently crowned WNBA Western Conference Player of the Week finished with 12 points and a team-high six rebounds, including five offensive boards.
- Alysha Clark made her 2019 home debut, notching 16 points, five rebounds and two assists while shooting 6-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-2 from deep. Clark did not dress for the Storm’s first game against Minnesota.
- Jordin Canada recorded a career-high 17 points (6-8 FG), going 3-for-3 for eight points in the fourth quarter. She also led the team with seven assists and three steals.
- The Storm scored 25 points in the first quarter. When the two teams met in Minneapolis last Wednesday, Seattle was held to 24 points in the first half of play.
- Shaking off a 1-for-8 outing in Chicago, Sami Whitcomb led all reserves with nine points, going 3-of-4 from beyond the arc.
- The Lynx scored 24 points off 20 Seattle turnovers. Seattle has only forfeited more points off turnovers once since the start of last season (27 points, Aug. 17, 2018 in win vs. NYL).
- After scoring 16 of their first 19 points in the paint in the first quarter, the Lynx managed only 12 paint points in the final 30 minutes.
- The Lynx finished with a season-high 50.9% (29-of-57) from the floor, making it just their fifth loss since 2011 when hitting 50% or above. Minnesota is now 84-5 in that span and 118-15 all-time.
- Napheesa Collierscored 15 of her 17 points in the second half. Her 10 points in the third quarter were more than she logged in the Lynx’s first meeting against the Storm (9).
- Sylvia Fowlesgrabbed a team-high five rebounds, bringing her career total to 3,079. In doing so, she passed Tina Thompson for fourth on the WNBA all-time rebounding list. The 2017 WNBA MVP also added 16 points on the night on 7-of-9 shooting.
- The Lynx continue without four-time WNBA champion Seimone Agustus,who underwent arthroscopic surgery on her knee last Thursday and is out indefinitely.
NEXT GAME: The Storm hits the road for a four-game swing beginning in Chicago on Sunday, June 9. Seattle will also make visits to Indiana, Washington and Connecticut before returning to Angel of the Winds Arena on June 21 to face the Los Angeles Sparks.