Game Recap: Fever 64, Sky 58
Indiana Wins 9 of 12 by Beating East-Leading Sky Twice in Three Days
INDIANA FEVER AT CHICAGO SKY
WNBA | Allstate Arena (Chicago, Ill.)
August 6, 2013
CHICAGO – Tamika Catchings scored 18 points with eight rebounds and three steals Tuesday night as the Indiana Fever won for the ninth time in 12 games, defeating the Chicago Sky, 64-58.
Indiana downed the East-leading Sky for the second time in three nights, both times holding Chicago to season lows in scoring (79-58 in Indiana last Saturday). The Fever, who opened the season 1-7 due to a rash of injuries, pulled to .500 for the first time since May and crept within three games of the East leaders.
Though the Fever never trailed in the second half, it was a nip-and-tuck battle from the outset. Until late in the game, neither team led by more than five points.
Indiana steadily outscored the Sky 13-6 over a four-minute stretch in the fourth period to assume a 58-51 advantage, never scoring more than two consecutive baskets. A bucket by Elena Delle Donne and two free throws by Sylvia Fowles pulled Chicago within three with 1:51 remaining, but Indiana scored six straight down the stretch for a 64-55 lead on Shavonte Zellous’ free throws with 19.5 seconds remaining.
Chicago’s Epiphanny Prince hit a deep 3-pointer with 13 seconds left for the final margin.
Zellous finished with 14 points and a career-high four steals for Indiana, who played its third game in six days. Karima Christmas added 10 points and four of the Fever’s 13 steals which were turned into 18 points.
The Fever’s defense helped overcome a 40-29 rebounding deficit, with Fowles leading the Sky with 17 boards and 14 points. Delle Donne, playing for the first time after missing two games, contributed 12 points and Prince scored 11.
It was just the second time this season that Chicago has lost two-in-a-row.
“We both shot poorly, but that was directly related to being an all-out defensive battle. Every possession was a war,” said Fever head coach Lin Dunn.
“I thought we did as well as we could do against Fowles and I thought we did a pretty good job on Delle Donne. They hurt us on the boards, but I really thought our defensive intensity and our steals made a big difference.”
The first half saw the defending champs and current East leaders play to a 29-29 draw. The half produced 13 lead changes as neither team led by more than five points. Indiana shot just 35 percent from the floor and was outrebounded 22-15, but six steals kept the game close.
The Fever resumes its schedule by hosting the Los Angeles Sparks at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Thursday, Aug. 8 (7:00 p.m.).