With the All-star break over it is time to get back to the grind for the second half of the season. Looking back on the first half of the season it could be discomforting thinking about the second half with the constant challenges we will face fighting our athletes health. With Brooke Wyckoff out for what is said to be the remainder of the season with a broken thumb, we will again have to adapt and try making up for any slack this put in our lines. It is a hard loss for this team losing Wyckoff’s excellent defensive presence as well as her demanding rebounding ability. It seems that Wyckoff was just finding her offensive groove too, which is going to be another significant loss to us.
On the good side of things we will be getting Stacy Dales back into the lineup, hopefully against Houston. Dales has been working hard to remain in shape and we have been looking forward to having her back to finish what she has started. Dales shooting beyond the arc will be an asset in keeping our opponents honest especially with the loss of Wyckoff.
Hopefully we will keep some momentum rolling as we had started against Charlotte and New York in our second and third victories of the season. The win over Charlotte was great with our players being very responsible handling the ball leading to very few turnovers. Our game hero had to be Jia Perkins who had a key shot to conceal the victory. We could sense how hungry our fans were to bring them their first home court victory, and believe me we are still as hungry to bring more. When New York came into town for our first match-up of the season we took control early with an extremely strong start. We managed the ball well while being on top for an entire game. This was a great feeling while spending the majority of the season struggling from behind. With consistency and aggressiveness from our entire team we found that we are capable of creating a great show for our fans.
Our staff was pleasantly surprised that Candice Dupree was chosen to represent your Chicago Sky in the 2006 WNBA All-Star Game, and represent she did. Dupree, put up 8 points and pulled down 5 rebounds while playing for the victorious All-Star East team in 12:00 minutes of play. It was nice to see her play with the best players in the league. This game allowed her to see what she has in common with other great athletes and hopefully gave her some ease of belonging in this league.
With a three game road trip right around the corner we will have to sharpen our tools from our last road trip and get ready for some battles. Road trips are never fun, unless of course you are winning with ease, in which our case is not. We have three games in four nights which makes it very hard to prepare for each game. Fighting through any fatigue we may face and making sure we create the best opportunities to capture victory are two areas we must conquer in order to keep our focus.
In the second half of the season we will continue to pressure our opponents with our defensive game and look forward to our shots falling. With only three wins in the season, we hope to finish stronger than we have started.
The next home game is Friday the 14th at 7:30 pm against the Houston Comets.
Ready. Set. Soar.