Te’a Cooper scored 19 points as the host Los Angeles Sparks snapped a six-game losing streak with a convincing 81-53 victory over the Seattle Storm on Sunday night.
Nneka Ogwumike contributed 17 points and seven rebounds, and Erica Wheeler also scored 17 points, as Los Angeles (11-19) remained alive in the battle for the eighth and final WNBA playoff spot. The Sparks have two regular-season games remaining.
Brittney Sykes recorded 15 points and 10 rebounds in a contest Los Angeles led by as many 30 points.
Seattle star Breanna Stewart (left-foot injury) sat out and won’t play again in the regular season.
Epiphanny Prince scored 12 points to pace the Storm (20-11), who lost for the fourth time in the past six games and fell into fourth place in the league standings.
Jewell Loyd had just five points on 2-of-9 shooting from the field and Sue Bird had only three points on 1-of-7 shooting for Seattle, which registered a season-low point total.
The Storm hit just 32.1 percent of their field-goal attempts and made 6-of-27 3-point attempts. Seattle scored 14 or fewer points in each quarter.
The Sparks shot 48.4 percent from the field and were 6-of-13 from behind the arc.
The Washington Mystics (12-18) are in the eighth position, with the Sparks and New York Liberty one game behind.
Los Angeles was outscored 17-0 at the outset of Thursday’s 75-57 loss to the Connecticut Sun but had no trouble getting started this time.
Wheeler’s jumper to make it 6-4 just 2:37 into the contest put the Sparks ahead for good. A short time later, Los Angeles rattled off 10 straight points to open a 22-9 lead with 1:16 left in the opening quarter.
Wheeler and Cooper opened the second quarter with 3-pointers as the Sparks increased their lead to 30-13.
Wheeler scored five straight points later in the half to push the margin to 20 before Los Angeles settled for a 45-27 halftime lead.
The Storm were unable to make a push in the third quarter, and the Sparks saw their lead reach 66-40 on Sykes’ basket with 10.1 seconds left in the period.
Cooper’s layup pushed the Los Angeles lead to 79-49 with 3:16 remaining.
–Field Level Media
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