Storm sweep Mystics out of WNBA playoffs, advance to semifinals


Within seconds, Jewell Loyd and Breanna Stewart drained three-pointers from the identical spot early within the fourth quarter for a 16-point Storm lead that despatched the Climate Pledge Arena crowd right into a frenzy. 

The 12,490 may sense what got here subsequent: a 97-84 victory. 

The win gave No. 4 seed Seattle a 2-0 sweep in its first-round playoff collection towards the No. 5 seed Washington Mystics and a visit to the semifinals for the fifth time in franchise historical past. 

Game 1 within the semis is Sunday towards No. 1 seed Las Vegas. 

To advance, the Storm wanted a collective effort towards the Mystics, which pushed Seattle for practically 35 minutes. 

Stewart completed with a game-high tying 19 factors, 9 assists and eight rebounds and practically notched the third triple double in WNBA historical past. Loyd additionally tallied 19 factors and related on 5 of 10 three-point makes an attempt. 

Sue Bird completed with 15 factors, 10 assists and 5 rebound whereas Tina Charles had 12 factors and Gabby Williams added 14 factors earlier than struggling a concussion and leaving within the third quarter. 

Seattle, which is 13-2 in final 15 playoff video games, took management of the sport within the third quarter whereas constructing a 71-61 lead. 

Washington trimmed its deficit to 85-76 with 4:44 left, however the Storm by no means let the Mystics again into the sport. 

Bird sealed the cope with a steal and layup to go up 92-79 with 2:02 remaining. 

It was Bird’s greatest sport of the season. The 41-year-old guard got here blazing whereas taking pictures 3-for-3 on three-pointers for 9 factors to guide Seattle to a 27-17 lead after the primary quarter. It was practically an ideal begin for the Storm, which shot 75% (9 of 12) whereas holding the Mystics to 33.3% (5 of 15). 

Washington answered with a 15-4 run to start out the second interval and take a 32-31 lead. 

The Storm led 45-43 within the first half. 


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