The San Antonio Stars knew they would need to play harder if they wanted to grab their first win in the 2017 season. The Silver and Black played tougher, but mistakes would once again be their undoing down the stretch.
Dearica Hamby forced overtime with a lay in with 0.7 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter, but the Stars fell short 85-81 to the Chicago Sky in front of 6,191 fans at the AT&T Center on Saturday night.
Hamby scored a season-high 17 points and Kayla McBride added 15 points. Moriah Jefferson had a team-high 18 for San Antonio (0-9), who remain winless on the season.
“I think we fought a lot harder than what we’ve done in the past, but then we got into overtime and we slipped up,” Jefferson said. “We had too many turnovers, and when you have that many turnovers in the second half you cannot win.”
The game was close all night long with the Stars taking an eight point lead, using an 8-0 run fueled by two consecutive Jefferson steals.
“People were trying to go one-on-one instead of sharing the ball and working to create shots for their teammates,” Stars coach Vickie Johnson said. “We can’t win like that. I thought we had a couple of breakdowns in the rotation and we allowed [Stefanie] Dolson to pick and pop a lot, we didn’t fully rotate to her.”
The Sky were led by Tamera Young’s 21 points. Allie Quigley added 16 for Chicago (2-7), who earned just their second win of the season after a rough patch of games.
Chicago used a 12-2 run in the fourth quarter, sparked by back-to-back three-pointers by Quigley. The Sky outscored the Stars 18-14 in the final ten minutes of regulation to come back to win the game in the overtime period.
“They were able to capitalize by forcing us into some turnovers until that overtime,” Chicago coach Amber Stocks said. “I’m proud of that way that our players stayed poised, focused, and knocked down their free throws. We did miss two in the overtime, but we did a good job of staying mentally focused and not letting the turnovers or the run by San Antonio affect us and our confidence.”
Up next: The Stars are now 0-9 on the season and will return to the court on Thursday night when they travel to Los Angeles to face the defending champion Los Angeles Sparks at 9:30 p.m. to open a three-game road trip.