ROSEMONT, Ill. (AP) - Allison Hightower's layup with 8.9 seconds left in overtime helped lift Connecticut to an 80-78 victory over Chicago on Friday night.
The Sun (15-4) rallied from a 12-point fourth-quarter deficit to force a 66-66 tie at the end of regulation.
In an overtime with eight lead changes, Hightower's driving layup gave Connecticut the lead for good at 79-78 and Kara Lawson added a free throw two seconds later to help secure the win.
Tina Charles had a game-high 25 points and 13 rebounds, Mistie Mims had a career-high 19 and Renee Montgomery added 15 as the Sun entered the Olympic break with five straight wins.
Chicago (8-9) briefly had possession following Hightower's score until Sonja Petrovic was called for traveling with 5.2 seconds left.
Courtney Vandersloot scored a career-high 22 points for the Sky, who dropped their fourth straight. Sylvia Fowles had 20 points and 10 rebounds while Tamera Young and Shay Murphy had 14 and 13 points, respectively.
Connecticut trailed 53-40 after three quarters, but rallied with a 14-5 run in the final 4:15 of regulation to force a 66-66 tie and overtime. Mims scored eight points in the quarter while Lawson hit two free throws to tie it with 24.5 seconds remaining.
Vandersloot turned the ball over with 2.9 seconds left, but a drive and buzzer-beating try by Connecticut's Hightower fell short.
Chicago briefly pulled ahead at 78-77 on two Fowles free throws with 19.1 seconds to play.
Chicago dominated the first three quarters and jumped to a 13-2 lead in the first 3:35 while Connecticut made only one of its first 12 shots.
The Sun outscored the Sky 11-2 the rest of the way behind Charles' seven points to cut the deficit to 15-13.
But they again struggled from the field in the second quarter, going 1 for 8 in the first five minutes while the Sky's Vandersloot scored eight points in a 12-5 run.
Chicago led 35-26 at halftime, but an energized Connecticut came out of the break with a surge that trimmed the deficit to 37-36 on Charles' basket at the 6:47 mark.
Vandersloot and Fowles each scored six points the rest of the way as the Sky built a 13-point advantage by quarter's end.
Connecticut was without forward Asjha Jones, who sat out the first-half finale after playing four games in six days.
Both teams will be off until mid-August for the Olympic break. Each has a pair of players bound for London: Connecticut's Jones and Tina Charles and Chicago's Sylvia Fowles and Swin Cash.
The Associated Press News Service
The Associated Press
All Rights Reserved