Rookie forward Breanna Stewart recorded 32 points, 11 rebounds and five assists, but the Seattle Storm lost 93-82 to the Indiana Fever at KeyArena on Sunday.
In its fourth game in six days, the Storm took control in the second quarter, outscoring the Fever 32-19 to take a lead into halftime. Indiana was dominant in the second half, however, as six different players finished in double figures and the Fever clinched the season series between the teams (2-1).
Stewart shot 11-for-15 Sunday night, including 4-for-5 from three-point range en route to her 32 points. It was the second 30-point game of the season and eighth double-double for the two-time Rookie of the Month. Alysha Clark added 11 points, while Jewell Loyd and Ramu Tokashiki scored 10 apiece.
Fever forward Tamika Catchings, who announced she is retiring after the season, had 15 points and four steals in her final contest against the Storm. Shenise Johnson led the way with 18 points for Indiana, which shot 58.1 percent on the night.
The Storm drops to 7-13, while Indiana increases its lead in the standings with a 9-11 record.
Catchings had five quick points to start the game, coming on a three-pointer and a pair of free throws, as part of an 11-2 start for the Fever. Indiana would maintain a comfortable edge for most of the quarter, but reserves Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis and Tokashiki scored five and six points in the period, respectively, to keep Seattle within striking distance. Indiana pounded the ball inside for seven early points from Erlana Larkins.
The Storm was on fire from three-point range to start the second quarter, including a pair of treys from Stewart, and tied the game at 27 after a 9-2 run. Seattle then took its first lead on a Langhorne free throw midway through the frame. Stewart again connected from three-point range late in the quarter, and the Storm took control with another huge run to take a 50-44 lead at the break. Stewart scored 16 points in the second quarter alone, including a trio of three-pointers.
The Fever regained the lead quickly in the second half, as Erica Wheeler hit a pair of jumpers on an 11-2 spurt to start the third quarter. Tiffany Mitchell came off the bench and scored eight points in the third, while Stewart continued to dominate on the offensive end for Seattle. Stewart hit her fourth three-pointer to cut Indiana’s lead to 69-66 heading into the final period.
Indiana had another hot start to the quarter, this time starting the fourth on a 9-2 run capped off by a Johnson three-pointer that made it a double-digit advantage. Seattle had just two points in the first 4:40 of the quarter, and the Fever proceeded to extend its lead to as many as 16 despite Stewart continuing to have her way.
Seattle is back in action against Washington on Friday at 7 p.m. PT, when Lauren Jackson will make her return to KeyArena as the franchise retires her jersey.