Shock Stunned By Sky in OT
A miraculous comeback in the final 30 seconds sent the game into overtime and Sky dominated the extra frame, defeating the Shock 98-91 at AllState Arena on June 8.
“I thought we played one of the top teams in the league right down to the wire with a chance to win," Head Coach Gary Kloppenburg said. "[We] feel like we’re improving all the time, we just haven’t been able to get over the hump with a couple critical plays we need to make.”
After being down as many as 13 in the third quarter, the Shock led by seven, 73-66, with 32.0 seconds left in the game before a string of unfortunate events sent the game to overtime.
Ephiphanny Prince made a three-pointer with 29.7 seconds left to cut the Shock's lead to four, 73-69, which Ivory Latta answered with two made free throws to put the Shock up 75-69 with 27.7 seconds to play.
Latta scored a team and Shock season high 25 points in 31 minutes off the bench to lead the team.
Second year guard Courtney Vandersloot hit a three-pointer with 13.5 seconds to cut the Shock lead to 75-72. This time, Latta made one-of-two free throws to give the Shock a four-point lead, 76-72, with 12.8 seconds left in the fourth quarter.
“It’s very heartbreaking because they’re playing so hard," Kloppenburg said. "We played well enough to win; you’ve just got to make free throws down the stretch. When they’re fouling you, you’ve got to be able to step up and knock them down and we haven’t been able to do that.”
Prince was fouled on the next possession and made both free-throws to make it a two-point game, 76-74, with 7.0 seconds to play. Prince scored a game-high 32 points, becoming only the second WNBA player to score 30-plus points in three consecutive games.
On the ensuing Shock possession, Scholanda Dorrell made one of two free throws which allowed Prince to dribble the length of the court and bank in a straight away three-pointer as the buzzer sounded to tie the game at 77 and send it into overtime.
“Seemed like we let this [game] get away from us," Latta said. "We had them, we had them on their heels and we gave them opportunities. Missed shots [and] missed free throws, including myself. Just one pass, one shot away [and] one free throw away and [Epiphany Prince] made a great shot to send us into overtime and it seemed like they had more energy and they hurt us in overtime.”
Dorrell and Glory Johnson each had 17 points while Jennifer Lacy and Temeka Johnson added 13 and 10 respectively for the Shock who shot 40.8 percent from the field as a team.
The Sky outscored the Shock 21-to-14 in overtime to secure the victory.
“It’s like déjà vu. We just lost in Los Angeles on a buzzer-beater," Lacy said. "It sucks to be so close and to make so many mental errors down the stretch that cost us the game. It’s heartbreaking when someone makes a shot like that. We put ourselves in a position to win, we’ve just got to close it out.”