In a matchup of two of the best teams in the WNBA, the Chicago Sky established a 29-15 first-quarter lead on their way to an easy 93-83 defeat of the Washington Mystics Friday night in Chicago.
The Sky shot 49.3 percent from the field and led by as many as 26 points early in the fourth quarter before Washington made a cosmetic surge to make the final margin respectable.
Six players scored in double figures for the Sky (24-8), led by Kahleah Copper with 19 points. Allie Quigley added 18, while Azura Stevens and Rebekah Gardner chipped in 11 points apiece off the bench. Emma Meesseman and Courtney Vandersloot each tallied 10, with Vandersloot dishing seven of the team's 27 assists.
Washington (20-13) got a game-high 21 points from Myisha Hines-Allen and 17 from Shakira Austin, but it wasn't nearly enough to keep it in contention. The Mystics played without Elena Delle Donne, their leading scorer, who was left behind in Washington for rest purposes.
The result enabled Chicago to maintain the league's top record while dropping the Mystics into fifth place, a half-game behind Seattle for the fourth seed in the WNBA playoff picture.
Chicago took control late in the first quarter when it rattled off 12 consecutive points. Candace Parker started the spurt with a floater in the lane, dished off a pair of assists and ended it with a runner for a 27-11 advantage at the 1:38 mark.
The margin reached 21 less than three minutes into the second quarter when Quigley stuck a 3-pointer and it grew to 23 later in the period. The half ended in fitting fashion as Copper rebounded a missed shot and scored to make it 55-34 at the break.
The third quarter was an exhibition in trading baskets, although Copper had the last say when she drained a 25-footer that Meesseman set up. That gave the Sky a 77-55 cushion going to the fourth period.
--Field Level Media