It’s not surprising that a game with 23 lead changes and 13 ties needed overtime to determine a winner, right?
The Chicago Sky defeated the Connecticut Sun 109-104 on Friday night, snapping the Sun’s nine-game home winning streak and putting themselves in position to potentially break into the top four on Sunday.
But more on playoff seeding conjecture below — let’s get to the game.
The 67-point first quarter likely tipped fans off to how this one was going to go. In fact, this went on to become the highest-scoring game of the season.
Diamond DeShields had 12 points in the opening frame, another sign of good things to come for the Sky.
Things cooled down considerably in the second quarter, scoring-wise — try 37 total points — but the intensity remained the same, as the Sun tied things up at 52 heading into halftime.
By the end of regulation, the teams met back up at 94-all.
Chicago had a three-point lead with seconds to go in regulation, but DeShields committed a late foul as Courtney Williams heaved a three with 1.3 seconds remaining. Williams stepped to the line and converted all three free throws to send things to extra time.
In overtime, the difference was the Sky’s six tries at the free throw line, all of which they converted. Reversing the course of the way regulation ended, DeShields scored the last two points of the game on free throws with 1.6 seconds on the clock.
For the Sky, DeShields finished with a career-high 30 points to lead all scorers. Courtney Vandersloot added 19 points and 11 assists, while Astou Ndour scored 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds.
Williams led the Sun with 25 points and nine rebounds. Jonquel Jones had 18 points and nine rebounds, Shekinna Stricklen scored 14 points and Jasmine Thomas had 13.
Bigger than basketball
In a gesture for a cause that is much more important than the game they were about to play, the Chicago Sky presented Jonquel Jones with $5,100 for hurricane relief in the Bahamas. Jones, who is from the Bahamas, is raising money as the Bahamas recover and rebuild in the wake of Hurricane Dorian.
By winning, Chicago pulled into a tie for No. 4 with the Las Vegas Aces. The Aces own the tiebreaker, but should the Sky win on Sunday and the Aces lose, the Sky would earn the No. 4 seed.
Meanwhile, the Sun locked up the No. 2 playoff seed.
Both teams’ regular-season finales are on Sunday, Sept. 8, at 4 p.m. ET (ESPN3/WNBA League Pass). The Sun visit the Indiana Fever, while the Sky take on the Washington Mystics.
Friday’s other action
Washington Mystics 86, Dallas Wings 73
The Mystics led from start to finish in a textbook victory over the Wings. Emma Meesseman tied her season-high with 25 points and notched her first double-double of the season, adding 10 rebounds. Washington was also led by Elena Delle Donne’s and LaToya Sanders’ 16 points apiece and Aerial Powers’ 12 points off the bench.
Combined with the Sun loss, the Mystics finalized their claim on the No. 1 seed.
Arike Ogunbowale erupted for 30 points to lead the Wings in her fourth straight game scoring 30 or more.
Up next: Both teams are in action on Sunday, Sept. 8, at 4 p.m. ET (ESPN3/WNBA League Pass), as the Mystics host the Chicago Sky and the Wings host the Seattle Storm.
Emma goin' OFFFFFF— Washington Mystics (@WashMystics) September 6, 2019
23 points & 6 boards at the end of ✌️ pic.twitter.com/t7tvqpDFKE
Indiana Fever 86, New York Liberty 81
The Fever needed almost all of a 21-7 fourth-quarter advantage to grab the come-from-behind win against the Liberty. Kelsey Mitchell scored 10 points in the final frame and led all scorers with 22 points. Candice Dupree scored 17, Tiffany Mitchell added 15 and Teaira McCowan had a 14-point, 13-rebound double-double.
Tina Charles had 19 points and 11 rebounds for the Liberty.
Up next: Both teams are in action on Sunday, Sept. 8, at 4 p.m. ET (ESPN3/WNBA League Pass), as the Fever host the Connecticut Sun and the Liberty visit the Atlanta Dream.
Minnesota Lynx 83, Phoenix Mercury 69
The Lynx used a huge third quarter to pull away and defeat the Phoenix Mercury. Odyssey Sims led all scorers with 22 points, Damiris Dantas added 17, Napheesa Collier scored 14 and Sylvia Fowles had 11 points and 11 rebounds.
The Lynx can solidify the No. 6 seed (and a first-round home game) with a win on Sunday. But a loss plus a Seattle Storm win will give them the No. 7 seed (and a first-round away game) thanks to a tiebreaker that favors the Storm.
Up next: Both teams are in action on Sunday, Sept. 8, at 4 p.m. ET, as the Lynx visit the Los Angeles Sparks (ESPN2) and the Mercury host the Las Vegas Aces (ESPN3/WNBA League Pass).