Caitlin Clark, Fever fall to Storm for third time this season

SEATTLE — Caitlin Clark had one of her more efficient nights as a pro, but it wasn’t enough for the No. 1 pick in the 2024 WNBA draft to get a win. 

Clark and the Indiana Fever fell to the Seattle Storm 89-77 Thursday night, the third time Seattle has defeated Indiana this season. Clark finished with 15 points, six rebounds, seven assists and one block. Clark shot 4-of-9 from the field, including 3-of-7 from 3. She also went 4-of-5 from the free throw line.

Jewell Loyd led the Storm with 34 points on 10-of-15 shooting, including 6-of-9 from long distance. Nneka Ogwumike had a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds. She also blocked three shots and grabbed three steals. 

It was a frustrating night for Clark, who also recorded six turnovers. It started with an injury scare, too. 

Clark drove the lane in the first two minutes and was short on the layup as her left knee buckled. She landed awkwardly, and looked like she was in pain, grimacing and flexing her leg repeatedly. Indiana coach Christie Sides immediately sent Erica Wheeler to the scorer’s table to sub in for Clark, but Clark waved her away. 

The Iowa graduate is known for her toughness. Clark didn’t miss a game in college, regularly playing through bumps, bruises and illness. She has talked frankly about wanting to play for the thousands who turn out to see her; it was another sellout at Climate Pledge Arena Thursday night, with attendees including Storm legend Sue Bird, USWNT star Megan Rapinoe (Bird’s fiancee) and Milwaukee Bucks guard Damian Lillard. 

Clark has a history of playing well in Climate Pledge. As a college junior she scored 31 points in the Sweet 16 here, then dominated every facet of the game in her Elite Eight matchup vs. Louisville, scoring 41 points, grabbing 10 rebounds and dishing 12 assists in leading Iowa to the 2023 Final Four. She scored 21 earlier this season in Seattle, also grabbing seven rebounds and handing out seven assists. 

Thursday’s matchup was the first of a three-game road swing for Indiana and Clark. They play at Phoenix on Sunday, then head to Las Vegas to take on the two-time defending champion Aces on July 2. 

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