WNBA

WNBA Playoffs 2021: Courtney Vandersloot records historic triple-double as Chicago Sky shock Connecticut Sun in Game 1

Behind Courtney Vandersloot's performance for the history books, the Chicago Sky continued their winning ways in the 2021 postseason.

The sixth-seeded Sky won their third straight game by shocking the league's No. 1 seed Connecticut Sun with a 101-95 double-overtime victory in Game 1 of the WNBA Semifinals. This was just the second loss for the Sun since Jul. 3, having wrapped up the regular season on a 14-game winning streak.

Vandersloot was the game's star, becoming only the second player in WNBA playoff history to record a triple-double. She put her name alongside Sheryl Swoopes, who was the first-ever WNBA player to record a playoff triple-double in 2005.

She finished the game with 12 points, 18 assists and 10 rebounds while also recording four steals and two blocks. The 18 assists, one more than the 17 that the Sun recorded as a team, are a single-game WNBA playoff record.

Playing 44 out of a possible 50 minutes, she finished with a game-high plus-minus of +11. She was one of four Sky players in double figures as Candace Parker top-scored for the team with 22 points.

Vandersloot's performance not only gives the Sky a 1-0 lead in their best-of-5 semifinals series but also spoiled the night of an eventful day for the Connecticut franchise.

Earlier in the day, the Sun swept multiple regular-season awards with Brionna Jones being named Most Improved Player, Curt Miller winning his second Coach of the Year Award and Jonquel Jones winning the league MVP award.

However, they couldn't cap-off those celebrations with a victory in the game despite an all-round performance from Jones with 26 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, two blocks and an assist.

Aces hold off Mercury

In the latter of the two Game 1s, the Phoenix Mercury and Las Vegas Aces battled in a very competitive contest but eventually, the Aces came out on top 96-90.

The league's No. 2 seed fell behind early when they were outscored by the Mercury 30-21 in the first quarter but they flipped the game on its head by outscoring the Sun 31-19 in the second period. While Phoenix didn't let their opponents run away it, the Aces never let go off the lead once they took control midway through the third quarter.

Riquana Williams scored a game-high 26 points in just 33 minutes while Kelsey Plum came off the bench to finish with 25 points - 20 of which came in the second half and three assists in just 26 minutes of action.

For the Mercury, the starters dominated once again as they scored 79 of their team's tally. Brittney Griner top-scored for the team with 24 points while Diana Taurasi finished with 20 points as the duo combined for 12 assists.

The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of the NBA or its clubs.

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