Sky News

Sky looking to find consistency after All-Star break

10 months agoKarli Bell

The Chicago Sky (8-12) fell back into a 3-game skid and finished 8th in the WNBA standings heading into the All-Star break.

In roster news, Ruthy Hebard returned from maternity leave, leading the Sky to release Kristine Anigwe from her hardship contract.

The Sky will hit the road for the first game after the All-Star break when they take on the Phoenix Mercury on July 20.

Swept by Atlanta

After a 3-0 week, the Sky looked to carry that momentum into a two-game set at home against the Atlanta Dream. However, the Dream shut that down with a sweep of the Sky on Friday (82-68) and Sunday (88-77).

Both losses came in the final 10 minutes where the Sky were outscored 43-20 over both games. 

Kahleah Copper led the way in both games, scoring 14 and 28 respectively. However, the Sky need to find more offensive threats than just relying on Copper’s scoring ability. They’re hanging in with teams until the fourth quarter, and that’s when the basketball starts to get sloppy with a majority of their turnovers coming in the fourth in both games.

“We didn’t get those 50-50 balls, and that can make you feel down,” Emre Vatansever said, bringing his shoulders down. “You got to get those balls just to stay in the game, and unfortunately we couldn’t.”

One positive of the Atlanta series was Ruthy Hebard getting her first minutes of the 2023 season on Sunday in her return from maternity leave.

“It’s been a lot. I worked really hard to be here, and I was really happy to be able to see that I’m still fast and can still compete,” Hebard said smiling. “It’s fun being in practice but it’s different than being in a game against other people who maybe don’t care about you as much. I can really hang.”

Connecticut extends skid 

The Sky wanted to enter the All-Star break with some momentum and energy but couldn’t finish yet again, picking up the 84-72 loss to the Connecticut Sun.

The turnover bug reared its ugly head again, allowing 26 points off 18 turnovers, the most turnovers since Vatansever took over the reins as interim head coach and general manager.

The Sky haven’t found a way to string a full four quarters together since their win against the Indiana Fever on July 2. In all 3 of their losses, they’ve been outscored 65-39 in the fourth quarter.

“It’s tough to kind of pinpoint exactly what it is,” Elizabeth Williams said after the game. “I mean you just have to turn it on, especially when you’re playing really good teams. Good teams do a good job of making winning plays, especially at the end of games. For us to consider ourselves a good team, we have to do the same.”

The Sky are looking forward to a much needed reset with the upcoming All-Star break. Kahleah Copper will be the only Sky representative this year in Saturday’s All-Star game.

“I think this is a group that I’ll go to war with out there,” Copper said after the game. “If I can look into every single person’s eyes down the stretch, whether other teams are on a run and we’re on a run and we can connect and we can have some fire behind our eyes, I can respect that. 

“As long as I can look at the person next to me and know that they want to go to war, then I’m cool with and live with the result, because I know our intentions are there and we’re going to compete and give it everything that we have. I’m excited for the break for everyone to rest and reset. After the break, really approach it to try and get ready for a playoff push.”

Stats and Notes

  • Elizabeth Williams reached 600 career offensive rebounds vs. ATL (Sun)
  • Copper moved up to 4th on the Sky’s all-time shot attempts list with 1,873 vs. ATL (Sun)
  • Alanna Smith reached 200 career defensive rebounds vs. CT
  • Elizabeth Williams became just the 12th player in WNBA history with 400+ blocks with her 5 blocks vs. CT

Don’t Miss Out On The Action!

Sign up for the Marquee Sports Network Newsletter today for all the latest Cubs news, plus upcoming Marquee programming and much more!

Newsletter Signup
Consent *
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.