Post Game Notes and Quotes powered by Chicago Sun-Times: Stefanie Dolson Sinks Last-Second Bucket to Lift Sky Past Dream

KEY RUNS

• Atlanta began the game on a 9-0 run over the first 2:49.

• Chicago went on an 18-8 run in the second quarter to take the lead for the first time with 6:50 remaining in the quarter.

• The Sky outscored the Dream 21-16 in the third quarter and 20-14 in the fourth to re-take the lead with just under two seconds remaining.

KEY STATS

• In the first quarter, the Dream outscored the Sky 12-2 in the paint. At the end of the game, the Sky led the category, 28-30.

• The Sky outrebounded Atlanta, 43-39.

• Chicago recorded 13 more second-chance points than Atlanta, 18-5.

• The Sky had 17 turnovers versus the Dream’s eight.

CHICAGO NOTES

• The Sky recorded 13 turnovers in the first half, the most they’ve had in any half this season.

• In Chicago’s first game against Atlanta this season, they outscored them 77-76.

• Following a stellar performance vs. the Dallas Wings, reaching her season-high in points, Diamond DeShields recorded 20 points in the first half, the most she has scored in any half of her career.

• Facing a 10-point halftime deficit, the Sky mounted their largest come-from-behind victory of the season.

• After going scoreless in the first half, Allie Quigley returned to finish with 10 points in the game.

• The Sky matched their season high blocks with eight, while Stefanie Dolson matched her career-high five blocks. She also matched her season high in rebounds with 9.

ATLANTA NOTES

• The Dream’s 13 first-half assists are the most they’ve recorded in any half this season and the team matched their season high in assists with 20.

• Renee Montgomery extended her streak to 22 games, the longest active one in the league, of making at least one three-pointer.

• Montgomery scored a season-high 23 points. She also tallied a season-high 3 steals.

• The Dream matched their season high 12 steals.

• Brittany Sykes dished a season-high six assists and matched her season-high 10 rebounds.

 

POSTGAME QUOTES

SKY GENERAL MANAGER & HEAD COACH JAMES WADE

On the message he delivered to the Sky at halftime:

“I think we started off being careless with the ball. In the first half, we had 13 turnovers and they scored 20 points off of our turnovers. In the second half, we took care of the ball more. We had four turnovers, but [the Dream] didn’t score out of them. That’s a 20-point swing. That’s the game. We won by 11 in the second half, we were losing by 10 in the first half. It’s that simple.”

SKY FORWARD DIAMOND DESHIELDS

On falling off after a strong first-half:

“The third quarter needed to be Allie’s [Quigley]. She needed to get in a rhythm. I knew that the first half she wasn’t playing her game, I really felt like I was playing for two, so I was just trying to be aggressive and kept talking to her trying to pick her up and then at half-time coach told her, we all told her, you got to get going, you have to shoot.”

On being knocked down frequently:

“I’m strong man, I’m strong. I’m good. I would take that beating any day for my teammates and for that win, so I’m good.”

On teammate Kahleah Copper:

“I love her. I think Kah [Kahleah Copper] and I feed off of each other and not just myself, but I think our entire team feeds off of her energy and when she comes in and does what she did tonight and she’s been consistent doing all season it picks us up, it makes us raise our level and we need her. She is just as important as anybody on our team. Everybody has their role and she’s a star on her own, so she’s huge.”

SKY CENTER STEFANIE DOLSON

On the final play:

“Coach put the ball in Sloot’s [Courtney Vandersloot] hands, which I think any smart coach would do. It was just Sloot, go to the basket, and make a decision. She ended up making the perfect decision, because both guys came to her and she somehow got the ball so, it worked out pretty well.”

On the logic behind it:

“We tried to move the ball as much as we can and just find the best shot we possibly can on offense and in that last play we knew Sloot [Courtney Vandersloot] was going to make the right decision and I think some of us thought she was going to lay it up, somehow she’s always making those acrobatic lay-ups, but I was ready just in case she was going to pass it.”

On teammate Courtney Vandersloot:

“She’s the best point guard in the country for a reason.”

 

DREAM HEAD COACH NICKI COLLEN

On Tiffany Hayes, who left the game with an injury:

“We took [Allie} Quigley out of the game, which sometimes is the Hayes Factor. I feel like Hayes is the best defensive two-guard in the league and she kind of victimizes most of the two-guards that she guards…The most frustrating thing is that we may have lost Hayes for a while. If there’s anything disappointing to take away from the game, it’s that.”

On the Sky’s second-half comeback:

“I thought to start the third quarter, we let Quigley go in transition a little bit which got her going. They had much more balance that way…They had a really good floor game in the second half in terms of moving it and having better balance scoring. Chicago is a great offensive team and it came down to execution and a couple late-game situations. I thought they executed a little better on their last two plays than we did.”

On their road trip:

“There aren’t any easy nights in this league. Days, nights, whatever. I think we want to start a road streak. We’ve been playing good basketball, we’ve been fighting like crazy, we’ve been in every game the last seven or eight. They haven’t all gone our way but I think we’re competing at a really high level…I think we’re actually playing really good basketball, we’re game-planning really, really well. I think we’re pretty dialed in, we’ve just got to get more than one player making shots in the same game.”

DREAM GUARD RENEE MONTGOMERY

On the team’s energy and fight it showed in the loss:

“I felt like the energy was there, everyone was locked in and focused on the game plan. We just didn’t make enough shots to win, honestly. I feel like we did a lot of things right and I think we did enough to win, other than make enough shots, but obviously that’s a big part of the game. We were locked in on the other categories.”

On what to change and improve going into their Friday matchup with Connecticut.

“I don’t know if we really have to change anything, we need to knock down shots — and open shots — and shots that we know we can make. So, I would really expect us to do more of the same ‘cause our energy and focus was great, we just really have to make some shots.”

On making six three-pointers in today’s loss

“Finally. That’s all I can say, finally.”

DREAM GUARD TIFFANY HAYES

On her injury that occurred in the third quarter:

“Probably just a minor hamstring, we don’t know [its severity] yet.”

On the fight the team showed Wednesday:

“I think we fought hard, it was an overall good game. I think we would’ve had it in the end if it weren’t for a couple mishaps here and there, a couple of injuries and we definitely would’ve had that game. Chicago fought hard as well, but I think we would’ve won it had we knocked down a couple more shots and had we not had a couple of mishaps at the end of the game.”

On keeping Allie Quigley in check:

“I mean I think I’m just a really good defender and my team depends on me to be that person, so I have to step up every game and guard the people that I need to guard to give us the ability to stay in the game and give us a chance to win. That’s where my mindset is on this.”

On the difficulty playing on the road brings:

“I mean every team is good in this league. Of course, it’s hard especially when it’s game-practice, game-practice and we just came off of that last week — three games and practices everyday so we’ve just gotta take care of our bodies, get the rest we need and move onto the next game.”