Sky Downed by Sun

The Chicago Sky (12-15) lost to the Connecticut Sun (15-12) for the second time this season, 56-74, but hung on to the fourth and final playoff spot in the WNBA’s Eastern Conference, with losses by Washington and New York. The Sky, coming off the largest winning margin in franchise history against the Houston Comets on Sunday, had no answer for the Sun at either end of the floor. The Sun outscored the Sky 24-14 in the first quarter and 23-11 in the third. Both teams scored only 10 points in the fourth. The Sky’s 56 points were their second lowest offensive effort of the season. The Sky defeated Connecticut in the teams’ last meeting in mid-June, 87-84, and lost in overtime, 97-102, in late May. The Sun has won 9 of 11 games in July.

“I’m just really impressed with how the Sun is playing right now,” said Chicago Sky Head Coach Bo Overton. “From the get go, they played a lot harder than we did. They got to all the loose balls and all the long rebounds. When teams do that to us, we’ve got problems.”

Chicago had 32 rebounds to the Sun’s 44. The Sky grabbed only four offensive rebounds in the game, to the Sun’s 19. Connecticut scored 12 points on second chance attempts.

“Rebounding is a lot about heart,” said Sky guard Jia Perkins. “For the guards, we have to go get it. First of all, we need to block out, and tonight I just don’t think we did that”

Jia Perkins led the Sky in scoring with 17 points, seven rebounds, and three steals. Stacey Dales added 10 points. Center Chasity Melvin went scoreless in her matchup with the Sun’s 7’2” center Margot Dydek; Melvin had 7 rebounds. The Sun’s Asjha Jones held Candice Dupree to only four points. Dupree had 6 of the Sky’s 17 turnovers.

The Sun jumped out to a quick lead and had a 24-14 lead going into the second quarter. The Sky went on an 11-0 run in the second quarter to close the half trailing the Sun by only six points. The Sun went on a 7-0 run to start the third quarter, extended their lead to 18 points and never looked back.

Sun guard Katie Douglas led all scorers with 18 points. Asjha Jones had 16 points and a game-high 9 rebounds, Evanthia Maltsi added 13 points and Lindsay Whalen had 10.

The Sky heads back home for a rematch against the Detroit Shock on Friday night at 7:30 pm at the UIC Pavilion. The Sky beat Detroit a week ago, 83-73. The game will be broadcast on WTTW and on WVON 1690 AM.