Game Notes: Sky 88, Fever 69 (Steppin’ up!)

Box Score || Recap || Highlights || Photo Gallery || Photo Gallery ||ย Play-by-Play
Attendance: 5794

This was a fun game!

Let’s start at the beginning…

The fun began with a pregame tailgate organized by Sky fans in Allstate’s parking lot. This has become an annual tradition amongst the Sky’s most diehard fans (…4th or 5th year in a row, right?). I stopped by for a moment and it seemed to be another riveting success! …although the storm clouds rolled in towards the end and everyone scrambled to put everything away before it started raining buckets!

The fun continued inside the arena where fans were decked out in pink gear for “Breast Health Awareness” and there were tons of nifty things on the concourse for “Ladies Night.” Yeah, I used the word “nifty.” Sue me ๐Ÿ™‚

Anyway, on the court, things started kinda slow for the Sky. There were turnovers, turnovers and more brutal turnovers in the first half. Once again, nothing seemed to flow for the home team and points were hard to come by. Despite the slow start and offensive/defensive trouble thoughout, the Sky went into halftime with a 1 point lead.

In the second half, the Sky were able to get the offense flowing due to some new gunslingers steppin’ up. The Sky broke the game open with hot outside shooting and turned a close game into a blowout.

Breaking it down a little more…

Damn, I love Shay Murphy. No, I’m not just saying this because she EXPLODED for 21 points, 6 rebounds and 3 assists in this game. That was fantastic and much needed. What I absolutely love is the positive energy, heart and passion she brings to the court every time she steps on the court. There’s something refreshing about seeing a player get legitimately fired up about POSITIVE things that are happening on the court. It’s awesome to see a player get in another players face in a completely positive manner in order to encourage them and fire them up. Often times it seems as if the only time we see Sky players show significant emotion and get fired up is when they are angry at the refs for a bad call. Shay is an absolute breath of fresh air.

Kraayeveldย shot lights out in the 2nd half of this game. Cat and Shay were the ones responsible for the Sky’s big run in the second half to blow this thing open.

It was great to see Canty out there again. I know she’s been back for a few games now, but this was the first that I’ve seen her play since the injury. She struggled this game, but regardless, it’s nice to have another ball handler out there. Canty looks for her shot more than Sloot and is more able/willing to drive the lane and get to the rim. We need that.

If I had to choose an MVP of the Sky at this point in the season, I’d choose TYoung. Yes, I realize that there are other players on this team that have better box score numbers, but TYoung is a game changer for the Sky. Over and over again, game after game, TYoung continues to be the most important factor in the Sky’s success. When no one else can hit a darn shot, you can always count on TYoung to knock a few in so that the game doesn’t get out of hand. When an opposing player is kicking our asses, you can always count on TYoung to come in and SHUT THEM DOWN. The Fever point guards (Phillips and Hobbit, er, Bobbit) were running the Sky ragged until Pokey put TYoung on them. I guess I can’t tout TYoung for 6th Man anymore (..cuz she’s a starter now), but I still think she should be in the running for Most Improved. To be honest, this year she’s doing a lot of the same things she’s done every year. Thing is, this year she is doing it CONSISTENTLY. That is huge. In 2009 and 2010 we’d get a brilliant game from TYoung followed by 3 “eh” games. Better yet, we’d get one brilliant play followed by 4 boneheaded plays. Not anymore. TYoung brings it EVERY game now. The growth we’ve seen in just a couple seasons has been amazing.

Salt & Pepper struggled, Salt more than Pepper…but both had their moments. Indiana put a lot of intense defensive pressure on the guards and Sloot and Piph just never really figured out how to adjust to it.

Big Syl put in work. With the guards struggling, Syl had to find ways to create her own shots. It didn’t help that the Fever simply collapsed on her in the lane every time she got the ball. Syl finished with a monster 21 points and 12 boards.

I think Wisdom-Hylton is the best passer on the team. She finds Big Syl in the paint better than anyone else. She definitely needs more touches.

Michele Snow spent her time on the court trying to kill Erin Phillips for some reason lol ๐Ÿ™‚ ..I’m serious! Snow repeatedly crushed Phillips with blind screens and hard hits. It was funny as hell cuz Phillips was being a pest on defense lol ๐Ÿ™‚

Coach Pokey absolutely flipped out at the beginning of the 4th quarter. The Sky were up big but it looked like they were gonna blow the lead with silly turnovers and bad defense. Pokey started yelling and banging on her clipboard on stuff and then started pounding on the the front of the scorers table with her fist. All this banging on stuff could be heard all the way across the arena where I was sitting. It was hilarious ๐Ÿ™‚

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Regarding some Fever players…

Shyra Ely is still one of my favorite players. I wish she was still on this team. Too bad she ditched us for her hometown. She had a solid game.

Catchings used to be one of my favorite players but I’m not too much of a fan anymore. I don’t like how she plays so aggressive at times that it borders on reckless and dirty.

I cringed every time Shannon Bobbit did something good on the court. Not a fan.

Katie Douglas’ pregame warm-up fascinates me. She BY FAR spends the more time warming up than any other player. I remember this from back when she was in Connecticut. And she hits every single shot in warmups. Luv this.

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Some articles from the game…

* A R T I C L E *ย Skyโ€™s victory over Indiana a major coupย (via Daily Herald)

* A R T I C L E *ย Murphy burns former teammates as Sky beat Feverย (Chicago Tribune)

* A R T I C L E *ย On Sunday, The Chicago Sky “Pinks Out” For “Breast Health Awareness Night”ย (Examiner.com)

* A R T I C L E *ย Sky Dominate Fever Atย Homeย (Sports Page Magazine)

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Some pics from the game (via Sports Page Magazine)…

Sloot driving on Phillips...

Good to see the vet back on the court...

Bobbit can't hang...

Da x-factor...

Cat on FIYAH!

~ Chicago Sky Hoops ~

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~ by audsquad on August 9, 2011.

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