Catchings missed her first six shots from the field and finished with a season-low eight points for the Indiana Fever in a 70-58 loss to the Atlanta Dream on Tuesday in Atlanta.
Catchings, the 2011 league MVP, dropped to 2-for-9 from the field when she missed an 18-footer late in the third.
"I felt like we got a lot of good shots," Catchings said. "We just weren't hitting them today, and we would take the ball to the basket and not be able to finish. It was very bad for us."
Catchings became emotional after the game when asked about Summitt, only saying "it's always great to see Coach" before walking away in tears.
Summitt, UT's head coach emeritus, disclosed she had been diagnosed with early-onset dementia, Alzheimer's type, last August. She stepped down as coach of the Lady Vols in April after 38 seasons.
Stopping an opponent as potentially difficult as Catchings, who ranks fifth on the WNBA's career list with 74 double-doubles, was a priority for Atlanta. When they last faced Catchings on May 27, she scored 25 points and pulled down a season-high 12 rebounds in a 16-point Indiana victory.
"We basically know what she wants to do with the ball when she catches it," Atlanta rookie center Aneika Henry said. "She wants to penetrate and go hard to the basket, so we just doubled down on her and helped out with Sancho (Lyttle) on her and stuff like that."