Richard Brian / Special to the Sun
Sunday, Sept. 15, 2019 | 4:35 p.m.
The Las Vegas Aces are advancing to the next round of the WNBA Playoffs.
Dearica Hamby, the league’s Sixth Woman of the Year, saved the season in the final seconds of the single-elimination, second round game against the visiting Chicago Sky when she stole a pass near midcourt and heaved the ball toward the basket. The 3-pointer, from about 35 feet away, swished through with five seconds remaining for a 93-92 victory.
Chicago had the final shot in the back-and-forth affair at the Thomas & Mack Center, but Astou Ndour’s 3-pointer missed to send Las Vegas into the next to the next round. Aces players stormed the court to celebrate their season extending — by the fortunes of Hamby's miraculous play.
Las Vegas, a preseason betting favorite to win the WNBA title, overcame an eight-point deficit at the end of the first quarter, using a game-high 23 points from Liz Cambage.
Chicago led 35-21 early in the second quarter when Cambage connected on her first points, at the 7:23 mark on the quarter. On the next Las Vegas possession, Kayla McBride hit the first Las Vegas 3-pointer of the game to ignite the Aces’ comeback. The only trailed by eight points at halftime.
A’ja Wilson had 11 points and 11 rebounds, helping Las Vegas win the rebounding battle, 44-36. The Aces were an efficient 6-of-13 on 3-pointers, while the Sky only made 9-of-32 attempts. At times, Chicago settled for the long-range shot and were timid to attack the basket with Wilson and Cambage on the interior.
When the Chicago shots stopped falling, Las Vegas took an edge and survived to extend the season. The Aces advance to the semifinals to face either Washington or Connecticut.