TULSA, Okla. (AP) - Sue Bird scored 21 points and Katie Smith added 17 as the Seattle Storm beat the winless Tulsa Shock 86-73 Friday night to snap a four-game losing streak.
Tina Thompson had 16 points on 5-for-6 shooting for Seattle (2-7), which has beaten Tulsa for both its wins this season. It also marked the Storm's eighth consecutive victory against the Shock dating back to the 2010 season.
Bird connected on her first nine shots from the field before missing her first attempt with 52.2 seconds left in the third quarter. Her accuracy set the tone for Seattle as the Storm shot 55 percent from the field.
``Tulsa is an aggressive team and you have to counter that by spacing the floor and we did that tonight,' said Seattle head coach Brian Agler. ``Sue took it upon herself to get us going on offense and we had a good balance of scoring.'
Bird also became the first player to hit her first nine shots since San Antonio's Danielle Robinson against the Shock last Sept. 11.
``Sue Bird showed tonight why she's the best point guard in the world,' said Tulsa head coach Gary Kloppenburg. ``She's been struggling lately but she got healthy against us.'
Jennifer Lacy scored 16 points to lead Tulsa (0-9).
Seattle opened the second quarter with a 9-0 run, including two 3-pointers from Thompson, to take a 30-18 advantage with 7:52 left in the period.
``We had a lapse in the second quarter where they did everything they wanted to do and it really put us in a hole,' Kloppenburg said. ``They have world-class players and we're a young team that is still growing.'
Tulsa got no closer than two points the remainder of the half, with Smith banking in a 3 at the halftime buzzer to give the Storm a 53-43 edge. Smith's desperation shot was part of Seattle's first-half long-distance barrage as the Storm connected on 8 of 12 from beyond the arc.
Seattle outrebounded Tulsa 17-6 in the first half on its way to a decisive 36-23 advantage on the boards.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
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