Bird Leads Storm’s Blowout Win Over Sparks

Seattle 70, Los Angeles 52

SEATTLE, July 12 (AP) -- Sue Bird scored 18 points and Lauren Jackson added 14 for the Seattle Storm, who extended their winning streak to six games by beating the Los Angeles Sparks 70-52 Saturday night.

The Storm (14-7) had four players in doubles figures. Sheryl Swoopes had 13 points, and Swin Cash added 12. Yolanda Griffith was the only Storm starter not to reach double figures, but she pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds.

Rookie star Candace Parker led the Sparks (12-8) with 14 points, making 6 of 14 shots. She came in averaging 18.7 points. Lisa Leslie had just nine points for Los Angeles on 2-of-10 shooting, but pulled down 11 rebounds.

Seattle, with the league's leading defense, forced the Sparks into 20 turnovers that led to 19 points.

The Storm kept Los Angeles to its season-low point total. The Sparks' previous low came Thursday in an 87-69 loss at Sacramento.

Up 38-37 midway through the third quarter, the Storm closed the period on a 14-6 scoring run, including a buzzer-beating putback by Griffith, to take a 52-43 lead into the final 10 minutes.

It was 54-45 early in the fourth when Seattle put together a 9-1 run, pushing its lead to 63-46. The Sparks never got within single digits the rest of the way.

Los Angeles had a nine-point lead early in the second quarter, but the Storm wiped that out with a 19-4 surge.

The game featured five players who will be in next month's Beijing Olympics. Parker, Leslie and DeLisha Milton-Jones of Los Angeles will play for the United States, as will Seattle's Bird.

Jackson will play for Australia. This was Jackson's last WNBA game until after the Olympics.

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