The Chicago Sky are back in the WNBA Finals for the first time since the 2014 season after delivering an upset series victory over the top-seeded Connecticut Sun on Wednesday night.
In Game 4, Courtney Vandersloot scored 19 points on 7-of-13 shooting, grabbed four rebounds and had four assists in 33 minutes to help the Sky to the 79-69 victory. Kahleah Cooper had 18 points and six rebounds, Candace Parker had 17 points, nine rebounds and seven assists and Azura Stevens added 11 points and seven rebounds in the victory.
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Chicago Sky’s Candice Parker, coach James Wade and teammates celebrate after defeating the Connecticut Sun 79-69 in Game 4 of a WNBA basketball semifinal series Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Chicago Sky’s Astou Ndour-Fall, right, Courtney Vandersloot (22), Stefanie Dolson second from left, and Allie Quigley celebrate after the Sky defeated the Connecticut Sun 79-69 in Game 4 of a WNBA basketball semifinal series Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021, in Chicago.
Chicago won the series 3-1.
Parker spoke to ESPN’s Holly Rowe at the end of the game while her teammates celebrated behind her. Parker played high school basketball at Naperville Central in Illinois, about 35 miles from the Wintrust Arena where Chicago closed the series out.
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“It means so much. I mean looking up in the stands and seeing familiar faces and I grew up playing in front of these people. It really is emotional,” she said. “I know we’re not done yet and we don’t want ti to be done yet Sometimes you have to stop and think and really appreciate this moment.”
Connecticut, who were 26-6 during the regular season and playing with WNBA MVP Jonquel Jones on their roster, got down early and struggled to come back.
Connecticut Sun players watch during the final seconds in Game 4 of a WNBA basketball playoff semifinal against the Chicago Sky on Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021, in Chicago. Chicago won 79-69. (AP Photo/Paul Beaty)
Jones finished with a game-high 25 points and 11 rebounds. Natisha Hiedeman added 16 off the bench and Jasmine Thomas had 11 points.
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Chicago made the WNBA Finals in 2014 under head coach Pokey Chatman. The team lost in the Finals to the Phoenix Mercury. The two teams may have a rematch if the Mercury can get past the Las Vegas Aces.