Sky's defense falls apart as Aces roll to blowout win
The Chicago Sky got the bump that it was hoping for after Saturday's convincing win over the defending champion Minnesota Lynx.
The only problem was that it didn't last for long.
The Sky got off to a strong start Tuesday night against the Las Vegas Aces, building a 4-point lead by the end of the first quarter.
But that bump wouldn't hold beyond that and the Aces flattened the Sky in the second quarter, outscoring the Sky by 17 to set the stage for a breezy 98-74 victory over the Sky at Wintrust Arena in the South Loop.
"We didn't shoot the ball overly well today," Chicago Sky coach Amber Stocks said. "And I am steadfast in my conviction that our defense needs to improve.
"When it's on and we're all playing team defense together, we are a dynamic defensive force."
The Sky defense was on against Minnesota, holding one of the best teams in the league to just 63 points, the lowest point total by a Sky opponent this season.
But Las Vegas, which improves to 9-12, hit on 48 percent on its shots en route to nearly reaching the century mark in points.
The Aces, coached by former Detroit Pistons bad boy Bill Laimbeer, got double-figure scoring out of 4 players, including 16 points by former longtime Sky player Tamera Young. Young, who spent 9 seasons with the Sky -- including last season, scored 16 points for Las Vegas.
A'ja Wilson, making a strong case this season for WNBA rookie of the year and perhaps even most valuable player, was held to 12 points, 9 points off her average.
But Kayla McBride picked up the slack and poured in a game-high 18 points on 3-of-4 three-pointers.
Guard Kelsey Plum added 14 points for the Aces.
The Sky, which hit on only 38 percent of its shots in dropping to 7-13 on the season, got double-figures out of five players, including a team-high 15 points from rookie Diamond DeShields.
DeShields was playing in front of her college coach from Tennessee, Holly Warlick, who was in town for the big Nike AAU girls basketball tournament at McCormick Place. Many other major Division I college coaches were in attendance as well.
Guard Allie Quigley scored 12 points for the Sky while point guard Courtney Vandersloot added 11 points and 8 assists. Cheyenne Parker and Alaina Coates each had 10 points.