August 31,2014 Louisville, Ky. (Analyzed Sports)
Zellous and January Step Up in Fever Win
Saturday’s WNBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 between the Indiana Fever and Chicago Sky would come down to pure determination and the contributions of role players. The Chicago Sky enter the game after winning a historic Game 3 in the 1st round of the WNBA playoffs against the Atlanta Dream. In Tuesday night’s game the Sky would come all the way back from a 17 point deficit in the 4th quarter to win the game 81-80. The Fever had swept the Washington Mystics in the first round of the WNBA playoffs 2-0. 7,557 were in attendance last night at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse to cheer on the Fever,but the Sky had a rowdy section of fans who traveled for last night match-up as well.
The 1st quarter would be a slow start for both teams. The Chicago Sky shot 47.1% from the field and the Indiana Fever shot just 37.5% from the field. The difference would be free throws as the Fever made 6 of its 7 free throw attempts in the 1st quarter. Also guard Briann January scored 11 points, including two-three point field goals, giving the Fever a 21-18 lead at the end of the 1st quarter.
In 2nd quarter other players got going for the Fever, including guard Shavonte Zellous, who scored seven points. The Fever also scored five points from three Chicago Sky turnovers and the Sky shot just 45 %from the field. Chicago did manage to get to the free throw line which kept them in the game, as they made five out of six free throw attempts. The 1st half ended with a 42 -33 Fever lead, as they scored 5 three-point field goals in the first half. Briann January led all scorers with 14 points in the 1st half.
The 3rd quarter would be all Fever, as the Sky shot just 36.4% from the field. The Fever shot 44.4% from the field and scored five points off Chicago’s three turnovers. However Fever center Erlana Larkins picked up her 5th foul with 6:03 left in the quarter.The Fever still kept the lead and got 5 big points from reserve player Maggie Lucas in the last-minute and a half of the third quarter to make Indiana’s lead 60-48 to end the 3rd quarter.
In the 4th quarter Chicago would bounce back as they would lean on center Sylvia Fowles down the stretch. She would score 7 points in the 4th quarter including scoring on an “and one” lay-up that cut the Fever lead to 63-62 with 6:26 to go in the game. Indiana’s Shavonte Zellous would make two key plays down the stretch, including a three pointer with 6:01 remaining and a block on Fowles with 4:25 left in the game. The Fever would close out the game after Zellous made another big three with 1:12 remaining. The Final score would result in 77-70 Fever win, giving them a 1-0 series lead.
“You’re Sleeping on my hops”, said Zellous jokingly after the game, about her huge block on Chicago Sky center Sylvia Fowles. Briann January of the Indiana Fever finished with 19 points in the game and Zellous had 18 points. Fever star Tamika Catchings only had 10 points but she didn’t need to carry the Fever as much with other players stepping up offensively in the game. Chicago Sky’s Sylvia Fowles had 20 points and 14 rebounds, while star Elena Delle Done had just 14 points. Game two will be Monday at 4:00 PM in Chicago, as the Sky will look to bounce back and shoot better than 12% from the three-point line to try to force a Game 3 with the Fever.
Post Game Locker Room Video.
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