Storm open the flood gates against Sparks in historic victory

Photo by Chanel Foster / fi360 News

Los Angeles, CA – A grinding first quarter made it seem like the Los Angeles Sparks may have the Seattle Storm figured out once again. Seattle made adjustments, and ultimately blew out the Sparks by 37 points.

Sparks Liz Cambage stuck on the court. Photo by Chanel Foster / fi360 News

The Sparks three game winning streak is snapped, and Seattle ends their Commissioner’s Cup run in 2022 on a positive note. The win pushes the Storm to the third best record in the WNBA, and nipping at Las Vegas heels for the first seed in the Western Conference.

Breanna Stewart had a solid quarter for Seattle with 12 points, but it was obvious that more needed to be done. The Storm would outscore the Sparks heavily in the second quarter. Following that lopsided second frame, Seattle never looked back. A 27-11 fourth quarter sealed the deal for Seattle, and set several historic marks including the best shooting percentage in franchise history and the largest road win in team history. Seattle head coach reflected on the win postgame.

“We were locked in from the jump. We knew that it was important to come out with the mindset of not knowing who was going to be on the floor, but that wouldn’t dictate how we wanted to play offensively and defensively. I thought that we got a lot of contributions from everyone, top to bottom. It’s a good way to end before the All-Star break,” Quinn said.

Breanne Stewart guarding Nenka Ogwumike. Photo by Chanel Foster / fi360 News

A key component of any successful basketball team is a good second unit, and it was a tale of two benches in this game. Seattle’s bench saw two key contributors stand out, as Stephanie Talbot and Tina Charles both recorded double digit point efforts. The addition of Charles to the roster is obviously big on its own, but being able to have her come off the bench is huge. For Los Angeles, the second unit was unable to perform for the Sparks, especially without several key players.

Sparks guard Lexie Brown discussed the team’s situation postgame

“We just gotta put our heads down and work. We didn’t know that Chiney was playing until right before the game started, things like that you just have to roll with the punches. As long as everyone focuses on getting healthy by playoffs, we are just going to have to do what we can with what we have,” Brown stated.

These two teams are in very different situations. Los Angeles is a talented team that is currently without several key players and is working under an interim head coach, but have found success in the past month. The Storm are a juggernaut, finding its stride, and just recently adding an eight-time All-Star in Tina Charles. The lopsided result is a surprise, as the last time the two faced off Los Angeles was able to contain Seattle handily. While the result has obvious differing effects for both teams, there is still plenty of season as we approach the All-Star break.

Photo by Chanel Foster / fi360 News

This Sunday, July 10th is the WNBA All-Star game, featuring Sue Bird, Breanna Stewart, and Jewell Loyd from the Storm. Nneka Ogwumike is the lone representative from the Sparks.

The Storm’s next game will come on Tuesday, July 12th against the Dallas Wings at Climate Pledge Arena with a 12PM PST tipoff.

The Sparks next game comes on the same day, Tuesday July 12th, against the Washington Mystics with a 7:30PM PST tipoff at Crypto Arena.