Published May 26, 2010
SEATTLE (AP) — Sue Bird and Tanisha Wright scored 16 points each and the Seattle Storm rallied from 10 down in the second half to beat the Washington Mystics 82-76 on Tuesday night.
Swin Cash and Lauren Jackson added 14 points each to help the Storm improve to 4-0 for the first time in franchise history. Seattle is one of two remaining unbeaten teams in the WNBA, joining Atlanta which has also opened with four wins.
After trailing by 10 late in the third quarter, the Storm went on a 31-10 run to take a 72-61 lead on Wright's 3-pointer with 3:11 to go.
"I said the same thing at halftime I said before the game except I was a little bit more pointed," Seattle coach Brian Agler said. "I don't consider what I said to them the difference-maker, but I do think that they regrouped and there was a little bit different team playing in the second half."
Camille Little's jumper with 1 minute left in the third quarter started Seattle's 10-0 run and Svetlana Abrosima capped it with a 3-pointer to tie the score at 51-all with 8:35 to go in the fourth.
"Sometimes it just takes one person to kind of spark the rest of the team," Bird said of Little. "You could tell, it trickled down and at the end everyone made big plays."
Bird, who scored 11 points in the fourth quarter, made a 3 about 2 minutes later to give the Storm a 60-57 lead — their first since midway through the first quarter — and they never trailed again. Jackson scored seven consecutive points, including four free throws and a 3-pointer to push Seattle's advantage to 67-59 with 4:46 left.
After Wright's 3 gave the Storm a double-digit lead, Lindsey Harding and Monique Currie scored four points each during the Mystics' 10-2 run that pulled them to 74-71 with 1:09 to go.
The Mystics (3-2) rallied to plull within three on Currie's runner off the backboard about 2 minutes later, but Bird made six free throws in the final 33 seconds to secure the Storm's win.
Seattle scored 36 points in the fourth quarter and outscored Washington 55-38 in the second half.
"We gave up like four or five wide open threes in the fourth quarter that really got the crowd in the game and brought them back," Mystics coach Julie Plank said. "Thirty-six points in the quarter — that's not going to do it. We held them below that in a half so it was just a defensive breakdown in the fourth quarter especially."
Currie finished with 24 points and Harding had 15 for Washington, which lost its second straight after opening with three wins.
"This was definitely a game we could have won and should have won," Currie said. "We had some breakdowns in the second half and the game got away from us. There are stome things we can learn from this, but we're dissapointed that we lost."
After going scoreless in the first half, Little had 11 points in the third quarter to keep the Mystics from pulling away and helping the Storm rally after Currie's free throws gave Washington a 51-41 lead with 1½ minutes left in the quarter.
"She was focused. She was poised, she finished," Agler said of Little. "That sort of got us going."
Marissa Coleman made consecutive 3s to cap the Mystics' 15-2 that gave them an 11-point lead in the opening minute of the second quarter. Washington scored seven consecutive points, including five by Crystal Langhorne, to take a 33-18 lead with 3:44 to go in the second quarter.
Wright made two free throws in the final minute of the first half to cut the Mystics' lead to 38-27 at the break.