ROSEMONT, Ill. (AP) — Elena Delle Donne’s impressive play is providing a big boost for the Chicago Sky.
The Sky forward forced overtime with a clutch 3-pointer and closed with a career-high 32 points in a 94-86 victory over Minnesota in a matchup between conference leaders on Sunday.
Delle Donne had five points in overtime for East-leading Chicago (15-7) while Sylvia Fowles added 31 points, including six in the extra session.
“Being down and to come back was incredible for us and many times before we haven’t been able to do that,” Delle Donne said. “To do that against the team with the best record in the league is a great statement for us.”
Seimone Augustus led a balanced Lynx attack with 26 points, Maya Moore had 19 while Lindsay Whalen and Rebekkah Brunson had 16 and 14 points, respectively.
Courtney Vandersloot had 13 points and Epiphanny Prince added 10 for Chicago.
The victory made Sky coach Pokey Chatman the team’s all-time winningest coach. Now in her third season, she’s 43-47 overall.
The Sky rallied from a 12-point second-half deficit to lead in the late going before Augustus’ go-ahead jumper with 47.3 seconds left in regulation gave the Lynx a 77-76 lead.
Whalen made it 79-76 with two free throws before Delle Donne’s game-tying 3-pointer.
“It was a great game, competing, battling,” Moore said. “We had runs, they had runs. We did everything we needed to do until the last few seconds (in regulation). There were many plays we could have had back, but that was the heartbreaking one.”
The loss was the second straight for Western Conference-leading Minnesota (17-5), which had a 10-game winning streak snapped last Thursday against Washington.
Brunson’s six early points helped the Lynx to an 11-4 lead just 3 minutes 30 seconds in.
The Sky went 0 for 4 from the field in the same span. Augustus scored seven as Minnesota led 17-12 after one quarter.
Delle Donne hit her first field goal — a 3-pointer with 6:48 left in the second quarter as Chicago closed the gap to 24-22. She added another 3-pointer with 3:35 left to force a 30-30 tie.
Chicago took its first lead at 38-36 on two Fowles free throws in the final minute, but Augustus answered with a 3-pointer and Monica Wright’s fadeaway jumper to make it 41-39. Fowles had an open bank shot to close the first-half scoring, cutting Minnesota’s halftime lead to 41-40.
The Lynx led by as many as 12 points at 65-53 following a pair of Moore free throws, but the Sky trimmed the margin to single digits at 67-59 entering the final 10 minutes.
Delle Donne played in her third straight game since missing a pair with a concussion. Minnesota was without center Janel McCarville, sidelined for the second straight game with a concussion.
The teams were a combined 48-for-50 from the free throw line on Sunday. Chicago missed two shots in overtime.
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