SEATTLE — Seattle Storm forward Natasha Howard and guard Jewell Loyd were named starters for the 2019 WNBA All-Star game Thursday afternoon.

This will be Howard’s first All-Star appearance and Loyd’s second, as she was voted in as a reserve last year. The 12 roster reserves for this year’s game will be voted on by coaches and announced on July 15, prior to the All-Star game on Saturday, July 27 in Las Vegas.

Howard, who led Seattle with 20 points in last Friday’s loss to Atlanta, ranks fourth in the league with an average of 17.8 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. She was named the WNBA Player of the Month for June after scoring a career-high 26 points against Indiana and earning her fourth double-double after the first 12 games of the season. 

Before suffering an ankle injury against Las Vegas on June 25, Loyd was averaging 15.8 points and 3.1 rebounds per game. She has yet to return to the court since her injury. Last year, in her All-Star debut, Loyd helped lead Team Parker to victory by scoring 12 points and providing four assists.

Captains for this year’s All-Star game are Elena Delle Donne of the Washington Mystics and A’ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces. They will draft their individual teams after all participating players have been announced.

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