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Skylar Diggins-Smith nets 35 points as Mercury beat Storm again

Sportsnaut
May 9, 2019; New York City, NY, USA; A general view of the game ball during the preseason WNBA game between the New York Liberty and the China National Team at Barclays Center.  Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Skylar Diggins-Smith tied her career-high with 35 points as the host Phoenix Mercury ran away from the Seattle Storm 94-78 on Friday night.

Diana Taurasi added 28 points and Sophie Cunningham scored 19 as the Mercury (12-16) improved to 3-0 against the Storm (17-10) this season. It was the last scheduled meeting between long-time stars and friends Taurasi and Sue Bird, who is retiring at the end of the season.

Phoenix pulled away with a 17-0 run as it outscored Seattle 34-13 in the fourth quarter.

Breanna Stewart had 22 points and 14 rebounds, Jewell Loyd scored 15 points and Tina Charles, making her first start with the Storm, had 14 points and 11 rebounds.

Stewart scored the 3,500th point of her career in the second quarter and grabbed the 1,500th rebound of her career in the third quarter, reaching those plateaus in her 174th career game, the fastest in WNBA history.

The score was tied twice and the lead changed hands six times early in the third quarter before Loyd made consecutive 3-pointers to give Seattle a 60-53 lead.

Sophie Cunningham countered with a 3-pointer and Phoenix got as close as two points before Epiphanny Prince made a 3-pointer to give the Storm a 65-60 lead at the end of the third quarter.

Taurasi made a 3-pointer to start the fourth-quarter scoring, and Cunningham added a layup to tie the score at 65.

The lead changed hands three times before Taurasi made a 3-pointer and two free throws to give the Mercury a 75-69 lead.

Back-to-back 3-pointers by Cunningham and Diggins-Smith gave Phoenix a commanding 85-71 lead.

The Storm scored the first six points of the game before the Mercury scored the next eight.

Diggins-Smith led Phoenix with 10 points and Stewart led Seattle with eight as the teams finished the period tied at 21.

The second quarter featured three lead changes and four ties as the teams played to a 42-all halftime tie.

–Field Level Media