Host Indiana beat Phoenix 89-83 on Sunday. The loss coupled with two Seattle wins in a home-and-home stand against Tulsa (6-22) this weekend helped the Storm clinch a WNBA-record ninth consecutive postseason berth.
F Camille Little was a big part of Seattle clinching with seven games remaining in the season.
“I think she has a good chance to be WNBA Player of the Week with these two performances,” Storm coach Brian Agler said of Little averaging 17.0 points on 61 percent shooting from the field (13-of-21) against Tulsa this weekend. Little also averaged 6.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists against the Shock.
“I feel like a point guard!” Little joked after orchestrating a career-high seven assists in Thursday’s win at KeyArena. The Storm beat the Shock 89-66 on Saturday.
Seattle tied Los Angeles with its eighth playoff appearance last year. The Sparks reached that mark from 1999-2006. LA didn’t advance last year and the Storm swept the Sparks 2-0 in the opening round of their eventual 2010 WNBA championship.
Both teams have won two titles in their respective record consecutive playoff berths.
Seattle (13-14) will most likely be seeded fourth in the Western Conference this year. Minnesota (24-4), Los Angeles (20-9), and San Antonio (17-11) previously qualified for the 2012 postseason. The Storm would play the defending champion Lynx in the opening-round, best-of-three series if the postseason were to start Monday.
The Silver Stars are currently seeded third. San Antonio needs and combination of four wins and Seattle losses to secure at least that position. The Silver Stars have six games remaining, two on the road and two against Seattle.
Seattle and San Antonio split wins earlier this season. The first playoff tiebreaker is the head-to-head series.
The Storm is in the midst of a four-game road trip. It plays at Atlanta (16-14) on Tuesday.