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Mercury will host the versatile Storm team that is rolling

Syndication: The Indianapolis StarIndiana Fever forward NaLyssa Smith (1) prevents the ball from going out of bounds, Thursday, May 30, 2024, during the WNBA game at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. The Seattle Storm defeated the Indiana Fever 103-88.

The Seattle Storm have shown off their variety of weapons as they rack up eight wins in their last nine games.

They will look to continue their hot streak when they visit the Phoenix Mercury on Sunday afternoon.

The Storm bench played a major role in the team’s most recent win, a 92-84 road victory against the Dallas Wings on Thursday night. Seattle (9-4) used just three reserves, but Jordan Horston, Sami Whitcomb and Mercedes Russell outscored their four Dallas counterparts 22-13 and added six rebounds and seven assists.

“We really experienced some big minutes off our bench,” said starting forward Nneka Ogwumike, who had 17 points and six rebounds. “We can go even deeper. (Again the Wings) we saw another building block from our bench.”

The Storm took a nine-point lead in the fourth quarter and Horston made three straight shots and assisted on Whitcomb’s 3-pointer to help push the lead to 13.

“Just like our starters are tasked with starting the game a certain way, so do our bench players and our role players,” Seattle coach Noelle Quinn said. “If they stick to that all the time, we’ll be even better because they’re excellent players and they have a lot to give.”

The four Storm starters who averaged double figures had their usual impact as Ogwumike’s output was supplemented by Skylar Diggins-Smith’s 21 points, Jewell Loyd’s 19 points and Ezi Magbegor’s 10 points and 10 rebounds.

The Mercury (6-7) suffered a 103-99 home loss to the Las Vegas Aces on Thursday night. Phoenix led by 16 points at the end of the first quarter and stayed with the defending champions throughout.

“I don’t think we’re that far away,” Mercury coach Nate Tibbetts said. “I like where we’re going. I don’t think we’re that far away and that’s a good team (we’ve played).”

Brittney Griner led five Phoenix double-digit scorers with 25 points and added nine rebounds, Diana Taurasi scored 22 points and Kahleah Copper added 18 before fouling out in the final minute.

“To get where we want to go, multiple people have to be productive,” Taurasi said. “It’s frustrating because we had such a great start and let it go, but despite all the chaos we found a way to stay in it and we’ll be better for it in the long run.”

–Field-level media