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Stewart, Loyd get Storm past Dream

Breanna Stewart had 27 points, eight rebounds and three assists as the Seattle Storm held off the Atlanta Dream down the stretch to earn a 93-92 WNBA victory Thursday at Bradenton, Fla.

Jewell Loyd contributed 20 points, five rebounds and four assists for Seattle (5-1). Jordin Canada added 14 points and six assists, while Alysha Clark tossed in 13 points with four rebounds and four assists.

Storm guard Sue Bird did not play due to a bone bruise in left knee. Reserve Epiphanny Prince left the league’s bubble site due to personal reasons.

Atlanta (2-4) lost its third straight despite 35 points and seven assists from rookie Chennedy Carter. Betnijah Laney had 20 points and Courtney Williams added 13.

The Storm took control in the early going, racing to a 31-16 lead after one quarter. They still held a 15-point advantage, 54-39, at the break,

The Dream actually led 14-8 but Seattle finished the opening quarter with a 23-2 run. Stewart was the sparkplug, as she scored the first nine points during that outburst.

Canada finished it off with a basket in the final minute of the quarter. Atlanta pulled within single digits at one point during the second quarter but the Storm finished the half on a 12-6 run.

The Dream tightened their defense and outscored the Storm 22-13 in the third quarter to pull within six at 67-61. The Dream did most of their damage in the final three-plus minutes of the quarter, outscoring Seattle 13-4.

Atlanta cut the Storm’s lead to one in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter. A Williams layup with 6:31 remaining gave the Dream a 71-70 edge.

It didn’t last long as Seattle scored the next eight points, including four from Loyd.

Carter hit a jumper with 39 seconds left to cut the Storm’s lead to five. The Dream scored on all of their ensuing possessions but the Storm made their free throws in the final minute, including two by Canada in the waning seconds, to clinch the win.

–Field Level Media

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