WASHINGTON – Elena Delle Donne scored a season-high 37 points and the Washington Mystics secured the fifth playoff spot with a 110-106 overtime victory over the Seattle Storm on Friday night.
The victory spoiled Seattle’s Sue Bird breaking the WNBA’s all-time assist record when she recorded her 2,600th career assist in the first quarter to pass Ticha Penicheiro and move into the top spot.
Washington led by three when Emma Meesseman made 1 of 2 free throws with 16.3 seconds remaining in overtime for a four-point lead. Bird was fouled on a 3-pointer five seconds later and hit all three shots to pull Seattle to 102-101. The teams combined for 13 free throws over the remaining 11 seconds and with Seattle down two with 3.8 seconds left Sami Whitcomb intentionally missed a free throw, but Delle Donne secured the rebound and made two free throws at the other end to seal it.
Meesseman added 27 points, eight rebounds and five assists for Washington (18-15).
Seattle (14-19) needs losses by Chicago and Atlanta later Friday night to clinch a playoff spot. Alysha Clark led the Storm with 20 points. Bird had 19 points and a season-high 13 assists for her 23rd career double-double.
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