Courtney Vandersloot led a balanced offense with 19 factors and the sixth-seeded Chicago Sky raced previous the third-seeded Minnesota Lynx 89-76 within the second-round, single elimination WNBA playoff sport on Sunday evening.
Chicago opens the best-of-five semifinals collection at Connecticut on Tuesday. The Solar closed the common season with 14 straight wins however misplaced 2 of three to Chicago within the common season.
Vandersloot, a regular-season help champion for 5 straight seasons, scored 15 factors within the second half, eight within the fourth quarter, together with two steals and layups. She contributed 5 assists however stated the scoring mentality was intentional.
“I (stated) earlier than the sport I used to be gonna be aggressive,” she stated. “I simply wished to get to that subsequent spherical, it was all that was on thoughts so I simply wished to be aggressive and hopefully make some pictures at present.”
Kahleah Copper scored 16 factors and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Sky, Azure Stevens added 15 factors, Diamond DeShields 14 and Ali Quigley 11.
The Sky, who misplaced 4 of six coming into the playoffs, gained with a 22-6 benefit in quick break factors fueled by 11 steals. Additionally they dominated inside with a 37-29 rebound margin and made 19 of 20 free throws, 10 greater than the Lynx.
Aerial Powers led Minnesota, which had gained 9 of 10 to finish the common season, with 24 factors. Kayla McBride added 19 and Sylvia Fowles 17.
Fowles, who was introduced because the WNBA’s Defensive Participant of the Yr for the fourth time in her profession earlier than the sport, had 13 factors at halftime and did not rating within the fourth quarter.
“She was actually dominant all season lengthy (however) our put up gamers did unimaginable job,” Vandersloot stated. “It was a crew effort tonight, making an attempt to make issues tough for her.”
Chicago led 42-38 on the half with Copper scoring 11 factors. Vandersloot had seven factors within the third quarter when Chicago led by as many as 10.
Up 62-56 getting into the fourth quarter, a steal and layup by Vandersloot made it 75-61 with 6:07 to play. Minnesota’s subsequent 5 baskets have been 3-pointers however McBride’s desperation 3-pointer that banked in from the highest of the important thing solely pulled the Lynx with 82-76 with 1:51 to play.
No extra pictures fell for Minnesota and Chicago made 7 of 8 free throws.
“We’ve been working all season to be taking part in our greatest basketball proper now so we’re feeling fairly good,” Vandersloot stated. “Clearly Connecticut has been taking part in actually good basketball … however we’re going to deal with us and attempt to proceed the momentum.”