Katie Smith named Player of Week

BasketballWomen's National Basketball AssociationSue BirdConnecticut SunSeattle StormDiana TaurasiAtlanta Dream

(Sept. 12, 2011) Seattle Storm veteran Katie Smith has been named Western Conference Player of the Week for games played Sept. 5-11, 2011, the WNBA announced Monday. She follows teammates Swin Cash, who won Player of the Week for games from June 27-July 3, and Sue Bird,  who won for games from July 4-10.

Smith helped the Storm clinch the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference, leading Seattle to consecutive wins. Smith ranked third in the conference in scoring (21.5 ppg) and three-point field goal percentage (.714), and eighth in steals (1.5 spg).

In Sunday’s 81-70 win over Chicago, Smith became the third WNBA player to score 6,000 points when she hit a three-pointer in the first quarter. Smith finished the game with 17 points to give her 6,015 for her career, which ranks third behind Tina Thompson and Lisa Leslie. Two nights earlier, the 13-year veteran scored 11 of her season-high 26 points in the third quarter to lead the Storm past Phoenix, 85-70, and clinch home-court advantage against the Mercury in the playoffs.

Smith has won Player of the Week five times during her WNBA career, most recently for the week of June 2-8, 2008.

The Atlanta Dream’s Angel McCoughtry was named the WNBA’s Eastern Conference Player of the Week. For McCoughtry, the Player of the Week award is her fourth of the season, tying the Connecticut Sun’s Tina Charles for the most weekly honors.

Other candidates for Player of the Week were Connecticut’s Tina Charles, Los Angeles’ DeLisha Milton-Jones, Phoenix’s Diana Taurasi, Tulsa’s Liz Cambage, and San Antonio’s Becky Hammon.

The Storm hosts the Phoenix Mercury in the Western Conference Semifinals, beginning with Thursday's Game 1 at KeyArena with a 7 p.m. tipoff on ESPN2 and 1090 AM.

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