Breanna Stewart recorded 25 points and 11 rebounds in her return to Seattle and she led the New York Liberty to an 86-78 victory over the Storm on Tuesday night.
Sabrina Ionescu made six 3-pointers while scoring 20 points for the Liberty (3-1). Courtney Vandersloot had 11 assists.
Jewell Loyd scored 26 points for Seattle (0-3). Ezi Magbegor contributed 12 points and 14 rebounds, Sami Whitcomb added 11 points and Mercedes Russell had 10.
Stewart was part of two WNBA championship teams and won 2018 league MVP honors during six seasons with the Storm before leaving the club as a free agent in the offseason.
Stewart scored 10 points in the third quarter as New York built on its seven-point halftime advantage and led 68-56 entering the final stanza.
The margin was three early in the third period before the Liberty scored 15 of the next 20 points. Stewart capped the burst by banking in a tightly covered jumper, getting the foul call and making the free throw to push the lead to 66-53 with 2:33 left.
Whitcomb's 3-pointer pulled Seattle within 69-61 with 7:53 remaining in the game before Ionescu drilled a 3-pointer to start a 9-3 run as the Liberty stretched their lead to 14 with 4:34 left.
Stefanie Dolson made two free throws to make it 82-67 with 3:40 remaining but the Storm later moved within 10. Then Vandersloot fed Stewart for a layup with 1:17 left and New York finished off the victory.
The Liberty shot 49.1 percent from the field, including 9-of-24 from 3-point range. Dolson added 10 points for New York.
The Storm made 38.4 percent of their shots and were 6-of-18 from behind the arc.
Ionescu scored 12 points on four 3-pointers in the first half as the Liberty led 46-39 at the break. Loyd scored 16 in the half for Seattle.
New York led for nearly all of the first half but the Storm inched ahead at 35-34 on a layup by Jordan Horston with 3:56 left. Stewart made two free throws 20 seconds later to start a half-ending 12-4 run.
--Field Level Media