WNBA
Mechelle Voepel, espnW.com 34d

Fan tackled after running at Ogwumike sisters

WNBA

A fan ran on the Staples Center court after the Los Angeles Sparks-Seattle Storm WNBA playoff game on Sunday before being tackled by security guards.

The fan, who, according to reports, had earlier been reprimanded for doing pushups on the sideline during the game, appeared to have something in hand as he ran toward the Sparks' Nneka and Chiney Ogwumike.

"I don't know who that was," Nneka Ogwumike said in a postgame news conference after the Sparks' 92-69 victory. "I think he was just a very enthusiastic fan who maybe got caught up in the moment. But, you know, we have the security in place to manage those situations."

Nneka Ogwumike had been doing a television interview on court. Chiney Ogwumike saw the man coming toward them and moved in front of her older sister to protect her.

"Nneka was doing her interview, and I always like to stay with her; we walk off the court together," Chiney Ogwumike told the Los Angeles Daily News. "And out of the corner of my eye, I saw, 'Oh, shoot, like what's going on here?' And some dude was coming at us. And so I just jumped in, because I'm expendable -- she is not! We need her. Middle sister gotta always take one for the team. So yeah, I think it was a fan who wanted to get to us. We're fine."

Nneka Ogwumike was the 2016 WNBA MVP and led the Sparks in scoring and rebounding this season. She had 17 points and six rebounds Sunday, while Chiney had six points and four rebounds.

Both sisters starred for Stanford in college; Nneka was the WNBA's No. 1 draft pick in 2012, and Chiney was No. 1 in 2014. Chiney previously played for the Connecticut Sun before being traded to Los Angeles before this season.

The Ogwumikes have two younger sisters. Olivia Ogwumike played basketball for Pepperdine and Rice, and Erica Ogwumike will be a senior guard this season at Rice, where she was the Conference USA player of the year last season.

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