Parker leads Sky to semis with Game 3 win over Liberty

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Natasha Howard (6) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Natasha Howard (6) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) pass the ball over the head of New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu (20) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) pass the ball over the head of New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu (20) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • New York Liberty forward Betnijah Laney (44) drives to the basket against Chicago Sky guard Allie Quigley (14) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    New York Liberty forward Betnijah Laney (44) drives to the basket against Chicago Sky guard Allie Quigley (14) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker, left, fouls New York Liberty center Han Xu (21) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker, left, fouls New York Liberty center Han Xu (21) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) reacts after being charged with a foul against New York Liberty center Han Xu (21) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) reacts after being charged with a foul against New York Liberty center Han Xu (21) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot (22) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Natasha Howard (6) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot (22) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Natasha Howard (6) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot (22) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Betnijah Laney (44) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky guard Courtney Vandersloot (22) drives to the basket against New York Liberty forward Betnijah Laney (44) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky forward Ruthy Hebard (24) drives o the basket against New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu (20) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky forward Ruthy Hebard (24) drives o the basket against New York Liberty guard Sabrina Ionescu (20) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • New York Liberty center Stefanie Dolson defends against Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    New York Liberty center Stefanie Dolson defends against Chicago Sky forward Candace Parker (3) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

  • Chicago Sky guard Allie Quigley (14) looks to pass against New York Liberty center Stefanie Dolson (31) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York.

    Chicago Sky guard Allie Quigley (14) looks to pass against New York Liberty center Stefanie Dolson (31) during the first half of a WNBA basketball playoff game Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in New York. Associated Press

 
By DOUG FEINBERG
AP Basketball Writer
Updated 8/23/2022 10:16 PM

NEW YORK -- Candace Parker had 14 points, 13 rebounds and 8 assists to lead the Chicago Sky over the New York Liberty 90-72 Tuesday night in the deciding Game 3 to advance to the semifinals of the WNBA playoffs.

The defending champion Sky await the winner of the Connecticut-Dallas series that will have its deciding Game 3 on Wednesday.

 

Allie Quigley and Kahleah Copper each added 15 points while Courtney Vandersloot had 14 points and 10 assists for the second-seeded Sky, which has now won four consecutive elimination games dating to back-to-back single-elimination games last year en route to the franchise's first WNBA championship.

The seventh-seed Liberty shocked the Sky by taking Game 1. The Sky routed New York by a playoff-record 38 points in the second game, racing out to a 31-10 lead by the end of the first quarter and never looking back.

This one was a lot more competitive. Chicago led 25-20 after one and extended the advantage to 54-42 at the half as Parker had 7 points, 6 assists and 7 rebounds in the opening 20 minutes.

New York scored the first 7 points of the fourth quarter, including a 5-point possession by Sabrina Ionescu to get within 68-65 that brought the sold-out lower bowl of Barclays Center to its feet.

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This was New York's first home playoff game since 2017 when the Liberty lost in the second round to Washington. New York hadn't made the semifinals since 2015.

That euphoria didn't last long though, as the Sky scored the next 16 points, including consecutive 3-pointers by Quigley to end the run and put the game away with just over 4 minutes left.

Betnijah Laney scored 15 points and Ionescu and Natasha Howard each had 14 for the Liberty.

Parker fell just short of the fourth triple-double in WNBA playoff history. She was looking to join teammate Courtney Vandersloot, Lisa Leslie and Margo Dydek.

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