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Sky crushes Sparks, 'over' comes through

ROSEMONT, Ill. (AP) - Epiphanny Prince scored 21 points and Elena Delle Donna had 20 to lead a balanced offense as the Chicago Sky held off a late Los Angeles surge in a 94-82 victory over the Sparks on Saturday night.

Sylvia Fowles added 17 points in the first half before leaving with an apparent right ankle injury, Courtney Vandersloot scored 12 points and Swin Cash 10 for the Sky (7-3). Chicago won its fifth straight at home, matching a franchise record set in 2009.

Candace Parker, who went to high school in nearby Naperville, scored 23 points to lead the Sparks (5-4), losers of two straight. Nneka Ogwumike had 13, Alana Beard added 11 and Jantel Lavender 10 as Los Angeles dropped to 0-4 on the road.

``To win on the road you really have to defend and rebound, you've got to take care of the ball and do all the little things,'' said Los Angeles coach Carol Ross, whose team finished 4-13 on the road last season. ``We're not there yet.''

The Sky, winners of three straight, led 67-62 to open the final quarter and weathered a Sparks comeback that cut the lead to 70-68 on Parker's layup with 8:00 left. Less than six minutes later, Chicago was up 84-73 following Delle Donne's driving layup.

``We said we really had to executive offensively and really take care of the ball and get good looks and play good defense,'' Delle Donne said. ``A lot of times we were getting good looks but shots weren't falling.''

Fowles came back to the bench midway through the third quarter on crutches and with her ankle in splint. But she insisted she'll be fine.

``Deep down inside I know I'll be OK,'' she said.

Fowles scored 11 points in the first quarter, shooting 7 for 11 from the free-throw line as Chicago opened a 27-11 lead.

The Sparks trailed 16-15 following Michelle Campbell's layup with 3:31 left in the period, but the Sky closed the quarter with an 11-2 run as Cash had back-to-back jumpers while Delle Donne hit a 3-pointer.

The Sky led by 11 points in the second quarter before the Sparks closed the gap to 47-41 by halftime.

Parker had eight points in the second quarter and closed the half with 12. Fowles had six in the second but tumbled under the Sky basket and left the game with 2:23 left in the half.

Chicago maintained the lead without Fowles as Prince scored 12 in the third quarter to help the Sky maintain a double-digit lead through much of the period. But A'Dia Mathies' 3 pointer and Parker's driving layup in the final 44 seconds trimmed Chicago's lead to 67-62 by quarter's end.

Copyright 2018 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
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