Sky can’t find spark late in loss
Candace Parker scored 24 points with 15 rebounds and Chelsea Gray added 20 with seven assists to help the Los Angeles Sparks beat the Sky 86-80 on Sunday night in Bradenton, Florida.
The Sky have lost three in a row and five of their last six games.
“We just keep on staying positive and trying to rectify mistakes,” Sky coach James Wade said. “I don’t think you do anything different from just trying to adjust and adapt to the situations that you have and keep on learning from the losses, because you have to learn from the wins and losses. So, we just have to keep on learning and try to apply what we can.”
The Sky jumped out with a 30-point first quarter and led by eight after one. The Sparks tightened their defense from there and largely seized control. The Sky (11-9) managed just 10 points in the fourth quarter.
Back-to-back three-pointers by Parker and Tierra Ruffin-Pratt and a tip-in by Gray constituted an 8-0 run for a 69-65 lead late in the third quarter, and Los Angeles led the rest of the way.
Cheyenne Parker led the Sky with 24 points and 10 rebounds, Allie Quigley scored 22, Kahleah Copper 14 and Courtney Vandersloot distributed 15 assists against just two turnovers. Vandersloot had 13 or more assists for the third time this season, leading the WNBA.
The Sparks (14-5) are a halfgame behind Las Vegas for the second spot in the standings. The two teams meet on Saturday.
Before the game, the Sky signed forward Alexis Prince for the remainder of the season and released guard Alisia Jenkins after her seven-day contract expired.
In the 2019-20 offseason, Prince averaged 22.6 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 4.8 assists for the Turkish league’s Hatay BSB (KSBL).
Forward Cheyenne Parker (left) led the Sky with 24 points and 10 rebounds Sunday against the Sparks.