Finally home, Allie Quigley is technically still looking for a home.
The Chicago area native and former DePaul star is back on American soil after spending the winter playing professional basketball in Slovakia. She’s also spent time in the past playing in Turkey and Hungary.
Interestingly, Quigley’s career within the United States has forced her to rack up a comparable amount of frequent flier miles.
Over her four-year WNBA career, Quigley, a 5-foot-10 guard, has played for four different teams: Phoenix, Indiana, San Antonio and Seattle. The Chicago Sky, which signed her to a training camp contract in March, would be the fifth.
“I think I’ve played with every player in the league by now,” Quigley said with a laugh on Thursday at Sky training camp. “It’s tough sometimes going from city to city, but I can’t complain. I’ve gotten to learn from a lot of different players and coaches.”
But deep down, Quigley longs to latch on with one team on a more permanent basis, and this time the chance to play with her hometown team is especially attractive.
“This is awesome. I’ve always wanted to get the chance to play in the WNBA. But to get the chance to play somewhere that’s so close to home is a great opportunity,” said Quigley, a Joliet native. “I’m just so excited.”
Quigley has had some of her best basketball moments in this area. She graduated from DePaul in 2008 and ranks among the top three in school history in points (2,078), assists (427) and 3-point field goals (248).
Three-point shooting quickly became Quigley’s niche in the pros as she helped the Phoenix Mercury win the WNBA championship in 2009. She has hit 44 percent from long-range over her career in the league.
“I’ve had the opportunity over the past couple of years to watch Allie grow her game,” Sky coach Pokey Chatman said. “Her ability to stretch the defense and score the ball has helped her lead her (Euroleague) team.”
Quigley’s team in Slovakia this winter went to the Final Four in the Euroleauge and won the Slovak Championship Cup. Along the way, Quigley led the EuroLeague in three-point shooting with a 52.5 percent clip.
“You really have to have something that you’re really good at. You can’t just be OK at everything,” Quigley said. “Obviously, I’m known as a shooter and scorer and it’s about never hesitating. It just kind of comes naturally to me. It always has, even when I was younger. Everyone always told me, ‘you’re a shooter, keep shooting,’ so I don’t hesitate to do that.”
Quigley said she won’t hold anything back at training camp either.
“Hopefully, I can work hard here and good things will happen,” Quigley said. “It would be really nice to stay somewhere for a while and know that you’re appreciated in one place and that all your hard work has paid off.”
Biggest Sky change:
Of the nine players returning from last year’s Sky roster, head coach Pokey Chatman says that third-year center Carolyn Swords has made the biggest jump in her game.
“She played in Turkey (during the off-season) and was going against players like Sylvia (Fowles), Ann Wauters, Sancho Lyttle, Asjha Jones and she averaged 15 points and 8 rebounds,” Chatman said of the 6-foot-6 Swords. “Her team made it to a higher level, and you can see that her body is in even better shape. She’s really had a solid training camp so far, but I’m not surprised. She did a lot of really good things last year for us when Sylvia was out for nine games.”
Patricia Babcock McGraw is also a color commentator for Chicago Sky and DePaul broadcasts.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.