Sky can't contain Vegas bigs Cambage, Wilson in loss
Being down a big, the Chicago Sky spent the better part of Sunday night dealing with a big problem.
How to stop two of the best bigs in the business, Liz Cambage and A'ja Wilson of the Las Vegas Aces.
The Sky, playing without starting forward Jantel Lavender, out with a season-ending foot injury, never did find the solution, and Cambage and Wilson combined for 48 points as Las Vegas got a 100-85 win at Wintrust Arena.
The win clinches a playoff spot for Las Vegas, which improves to 18-9 on the season. The Sky drops to 15-11.
"Because we are short-staffed in the big girl position, it was exhausting," Sky forward Cheyenne Parker said of defending the 6-foot-8 Cambage and the 6-foot-4 Wilson. "But we were facing adversity and that was just something to be embraced."
Cambage and Wilson certainly embraced the opportunities they had against the Sky.
Cambage posted a double-double with 23 points and 10 rebounds and Wilson, playing in her first game since a 9-game break to nurse an ankle injury, finished with a team-high 25 points.
Chicago Sky forward Diamond DeShields led all scorers with 28 points on a night in which offense didn't always come easy for her and her teammates.
The Sky hit just 34 percent of its shots while Las Vegas connected on 50 percent of its shots.
According to Sky coach James Wade, officiating was also a problem.
Both the Sky and the Aces were whistled for 25 fouls apiece, and Chicago actually shot one more free throw (31) than Las Vegas (30). But the Sky's shortened staff of bigs were all in foul trouble. In fact, starting center Stefanie Dolson played just 10 minutes and was in immediate foul trouble, as was Parker, who finished with 16 points.
"That was one of the most ridiculous games I've ever seen in my life and that I've ever been a part of," Wade said. "They sent them (the Aces) to the free throw line for everything. Everything. Everything. That was absolutely atrocious. But it just is what it is and we have to deal with the adversity."