Las Vegas Aces guard Chelsea Gray goes up for the shot against the defending Chicago Sky at Wintrust Arena in Chicago on Sat May 28, 2022 (@WNBA photo)
Las Vegas Denies Challenge By Chicago 83-76
By Barbara Mason
Saturday afternoon the Las Vegas Aces (8-1) took on the Chicago Sky (4-3) at Wintrust Arena in the Windy City.
The Sky outscored the Aces in the first quarter by the slim margin of 23-22. Las Vegas turned it on in the second quarter overpowering Chicago to the tune of 29-15. The Aces led at the half 51-38, momentum clearly on their side.
There was a real momentum change in the final minutes of the third quarter. Chicago went on a 7-0 run cutting the Las Vegas 18 point lead in half. The Aces still had a 60-51 lead but Las Vegas had to start making some baskets curbing the Chicago run.
Las Vegas would get back on track as the third quarter ran out. The Aces led 66-53. Defensively A’ja Wilson had 12 rebounds and Derica Hamby had 11. Both Wilson and Hamby shot in double digits through three quarters along with Chelsa Grey and Kelsey Plum.
The Aces had cooled off here and there in the third quarter. These momentary lapses gave Chicago some great opportunities that they were unable to capitalize on.
Chicago continued to struggle from downtown missing 18 straight attempts but they did continue to threaten the Las Vegas lead.going into the fourth quarter. Chicago really cranked it up on the defensive end coupled with taking advantage of Las Vegas turnovers.
The Aces had five fourth quarter turnovers allowing the Sky to get back in this game. Las Vegas was able to finish this game with some great aggressive offensive work 83-76. The Aces had taken down the defending champion Chicago Sky.
Las Vegas had some great offensive work in this game. A’ja Wilson finished with 22 points and 16 rebounds. Every starter finished the game with double digits.
Kelsy Plum had 19 points, Chelsea Gray with 18, Derica Hamby had 14 points with 14 rebounds and Jackie Young had ten points. Every one of these ladies was needed to pull this game out in a great win.
The high scorer for the Sky was Courtney Vandersloot and Kahleah Cooper both with 12 points.
Taking away the paint from Chicago and forcing those failed attempts from downtown was key for the Aces in this win. Both teams finished the game with 50 rebounds. The Sky made this game a close one but came up just short.
Tuesday night the Aces will take on the Connecticut Sun at Michelob ULTRA Arena in Las Vegas. Tipoff is scheduled for 6:00 PM.