The Seattle Storm defeated the Phoenix Mercury 73-69 in Seattle in both teams' first preseason contest.
All eyes were on Seattle rookie and first-round draft pick Jordin Canada, who poured in a team-high 15 points on 4-9 shooting and a perfect 7-7 from the free throw line. The highly anticipated point guard who is known for her quickness and defensive presence did not disappoint on the pro stage with five steals in her 22 minutes of play.
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I anticipate a great year for this rookie, there is something truly special about her and her fearless mentality she attacks each game with.
Breanna Stewart and Jewel Loyd also added 15 points a piece while Sue Bird finished with 10 points and four steals.
Seattle jumped out to a 21-12 lead at the end of the first quarter and ended the first half with a 42-36 advantage. In a back and forth game with nine lead changes, the game came down to the wire with the major difference being in turnovers. The Storm were able to turn the Mercury over 22 times versus their 15.
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The Mercury's first round pick, Marie Gulich, held her own inside finishing the contest with 10 points on 5-6 shooting and six rebounds in the absence of WNBA All-Star Brittney Griner, who did not play.
The 6-foot-5 Gulich is a force inside and is still coming into her own with great hands, body control and touch around the basket. Her best basketball is ahead of her and she appears to be playing with a great amount of confidence beginning her pro career. Check out Gulich going to work here:
DeWanna Bonner made her return after sitting out the 2017 season due to pregnancy, finishing the game with 13 points. The Mercury were also without Diana Tarausi who also did not play. Nonetheless, each team showed great promise from rookies playing to their potential and both teams holding a talented core of vets.
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The Mercury will turn around and host Seattle at home for both teams second preseason game of the year on Saturday, May 12.
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