Jackson Carries Storm Past Sparks

Seattle 85, Los Angeles 71

LOS ANGELES, June 24 (AP) -- Lauren Jackson tied a career high with 35 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Seattle Storm to an 83-71 victory over the Los Angeles Sparks on Sunday night.

Betty Lennox added 12 points and season highs of nine rebounds and six assists for the Storm (6-6), who snapped a two-game losing streak. Janell Burse also had 12 points.

Jackson made 14 of 22 shots, including two of three from 3-point range, in her first game against the Sparks with Lisa Leslie sitting out this season for a pregnancy. Leslie gave birth June 15.

"I was able to take it outside a little bit and be aggressive toward the basket,'' Jackson said. "I went out there with a pretty easy, clear mind and wanted to do my own thing. It was fun.''

Sherill Baker and Sidney Spencer scored 15 points apiece for the Sparks (6-6), who have lost four of five. Baker, acquired from New York on Wednesday, added eight assists.

"A lineup change will be on its way,'' Sparks coach Michael Cooper said. "We're just digging ourselves a hole. Baker, as well as Sidney Spencer, proved that they might need to be in the starting lineup.''

Jackson and Iziane Castro Marques each scored five points during a 15-4 surge that put the Storm ahead 19-10 with 2:07 left in the first quarter.

Spencer made two 3-point shots in 15 seconds to lead an 8-0 burst that narrowed the deficit to 22-20. But Seattle responded with its own 8-0 run to build a 30-20 lead with 7:15 left in the second quarter. Seattle outrebounded Los Angeles 43-25 yet committed 24 turnovers that resulted in 26 of the Sparks' points.

"We're still learning how to play well with each other,'' Storm coach Anne Donovan said. "It's hard to imagine when we look as good as we did tonight.''