MINNEAPOLIS — Natasha Howard scored a career-high 33 points, Sami Whitcomb made five of Seattle’s 12 three-pointers and the Storm closed the game on a 10-0 run to beat the Minnesota Lynx 90-79 on Wednesday night.
Seattle led 78-66 with 6:25 left until Minnesota made three-pointers on its next three possessions to pull within three. The Lynx got as close as 78-77, but Seattle answered with 10 straight points, highlighted by Whitcomb’s drive and no-look pass to Alysha Clark.
Whitcomb had 15 points and eight assists, and Clark added 12 points and seven rebounds. Seattle (11-8) has won a season-high three straight games without injured stars Breanna Stewart, Sue Bird and Jewell Loyd.
Howard hit 12 of 21 shots and went 7 for 7 at the foul line for Seattle, which shot 53.2 percent from the field, including 12 of 25 from three-point range.
“I ate my Wheaties this morning,” said Howard. “It was kind of hard to stop Sylvia Fowles in the first half, (but) we got it together and just a great team win overall.”
Howard played despite domestic-abuse allegations, which her wife surfaced on Saturday. Howard, through her attorney, issued a statement on Tuesday denying the allegations.
After the Lynx scored 11 straight points to pull within 80-79 with 3:33 remaining, Howard ended the Seattle scoring drought with an inside basket with 3:53 to go.
Howard got the roll on another close-range shot, and Clark added a layup to give the Storm an 84-79 edge with two minutes left. Howard hit two free throws to push the margin to seven 32 seconds later.
Shavonte Zellous sank two free throws to make it 88-79 with 1:02 left, and Howard added two more with 57.6 seconds to go to push the lead to 11 and seal the win.
Seattle led by 10 at halftime but stretched the edge to 68-47 on a three-pointer by Clark with 3:07 remaining in the third. The Storm took a 71-54 lead into the final quarter.
Seattle opened on a 15-4 run as Minnesota made just two of its first eight shots and led 26-16 after the first quarter and 40-30 at halftime.