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Storm blitz Lynx, spoil Fowles' potential last game at Target Center

Seattle spoiled Sylvia Fowles' final regular-season home game

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A teary eyed Minnesota Lynx center Sylvia Fowles watches the video board as teammates talk about playing with her after a WNBA game against the Seattle Storm at the Target Center in Minneapolis on Friday, Aug 12, 2022. John Autey / St. Paul Pioneer Press
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MINNEAPOLIS — Tina Charles scored 23 points on Friday night and the Seattle Storm spoiled Sylvia Fowles' final regular-season home game, walloping the Minnesota Lynx 96-69 in Minneapolis to clinch homecourt advantage for the first round of the WNBA playoffs.

Jewell Loyd added 21 for fourth-place Seattle (22-13), which will host the fifth-place Washington Mystics on Thursday in the opener of a best-of-three series. Breanna Stewart contributed 16 points and 10 rebounds, and Briann January chipped in 11 points off the bench.

Fowles scored 13 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for Minnesota (14-21), which could have clinched a playoff berth with a win and a Phoenix loss later Friday night against the Dallas Wings. The Lynx, who fell a half-game below the Mercury (14-20) pending the late result, conclude their regular season on Sunday at playoff-bound Connecticut.

MORE MINNESOTA LYNX COVERAGE:
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The WNBA’s all-time best center will be celebrated Friday after what may be her final game in Minnesota
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The Lynx (11-19) are now 1 1/2 games behind the Dream but the Phoenix Mercury (12-16 entering Thursday) and New York Liberty (12-17) are also in contention.
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Five players scored in double figures for Minnesota (10-18), led by Aerial Powers with 14 points.
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For the game, the Lynx committed 16 turnovers and shot 33% from the field while tallying a season-low 57 points — led by 16 from Kayla McBride, who felt the Lynx got good shots that simply weren’t going down.
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Playing their third game in four nights, the Lynx (10-16) moved within a game of Phoenix for the WNBA's final playoff spot with 10 games left.
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Rachel Banham scored 24 points and Sylvia Fowles recorded 20 points and 17 rebounds for Minnesota (9-16), which had a three-game winning streak halted.
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It was the third win in a row for the Lynx (9-15).
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Minnesota has won five of seven and, in addition to beating the Sky, the Lynx crushed Las Vegas 102-71 on Sunday. Each foe had the WNBA’s best record entering the game.
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Moriah Jefferson's triple-double leads Minnesota with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists
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Kayla McBride and Jessica Shepard each scored 15 points for Minnesota, which also got 12 from Sylvia Fowles, 11 from Moriah Jefferson and 10 points from Natalie Achonwa.

Off the Minnesota bench, Aerial Powers added 18 points and Bridget Carleton netted 11, but the Lynx simply didn't have any answers on either end of the floor. They made only 36.5 percent of their shots from the field, while the Storm connected on 52.8 percent on their field-goal tries.

With a crowd of 12,134 in Target Center, Fowles started the night by flipping in a lefty jump hook over two defenders. That 2-0 lead and any chance the crowd could make a difference lasted 12 seconds, enough time for Loyd to can a 3-pointer that put Seattle ahead for good.

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Sterling defense keyed a 15-2 Seattle run over a five-minute span. Stewart cut off multiple attacks to the bucket and her teammates aggressively played passing lanes. The margin grew to 30-10 after one quarter.

Carleton sank a 3-pointer with 4:40 left in the first half that drew the Lynx within 36-24. However, Seattle ripped off a 9-2 run that Stewart capped with a layup, leading to a 45-28 halftime advantage.

Bird stole the ball from Fowles and scored to up the margin to 56-36 at the 6:24 mark of the third period. The Storm steadily upped the cushion as high as 29 points late in the quarter.

Seattle owned a 32-point advantage midway through the fourth quarter before taking its foot off the gas.

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This story was written by one of our partner news agencies. Forum Communications Company uses content from agencies such as Reuters, Kaiser Health News, Tribune News Service and others to provide a wider range of news to our readers. Learn more about the news services FCC uses here.

Related Topics: MINNESOTA LYNX
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