We never really had a doubt, did we, Skytown? In an exhilarating winner-take-all Game 3, the Chicago Sky abruptly ended the New York Liberty’s 2022 season by a score of 90-72. This high-scoring affair included six Sky players scoring in double figures. 

One of the keys to this game was to take the sold-out crowd at Barclays Center in Brooklyn out of the game early, and strike first. The Sky outscored the Liberty in the paint during the first quarter by 14-6, and followed with 29 points in the second quarter. Courtney Vandersloot was the first to reach double-digits in scoring, and led all scorers with 12 first half points.

“The more experienced team won tonight,” Liberty head coach Sandy Brondello said in a post-game conference. “You see the chemistry that they have. They just had poise, and just made plays.”

Player of the game Candace Parker fell two assists short of a triple-double, which would have been the fourth in WNBA playoff history. “I’m old in basketball years,” Parker told ESPN’s Holly Rowe after the game. Parker contributed on both ends of the court, including an impressive pump fake in the third quarter. Parker maneuvered around Natasha Howard guarding at the perimeter; a peculiar trick shot off Betnijah Laney’s arm followed.

Rebekah Gardner put on a defensive masterclass as she was able to put the brakes on superstar Sabrina Ionescu. Kahleah Copper showcased some clinic-worthy defense and scored a team-high 15 points. Azurá Stevens contributed 12 points from off the bench. Collectively, the Sky shot 48% from the field. Shooting threes still remains an area of potential improvement, but Allie Quigley landed four out of eight attempts from beyond the perimeter.

Chicago’s opponent for the semi-finals has yet to be determined. The Dallas Wings and Connecticut Sun will square off in their Game 3 matchup on Wednesday night. Dallas’ All-Star guard Arike Ogunbowale was listed as “probable” to play as of Tuesday afternoon. Ogunbowale underwent season-ending surgery to alleviate an abdominal injury in early August. 

As for the Sky, they’ll return home on Sunday, August 28, to face the winner of that aforementioned Game 3 between Dallas and Connecticut. This will be Game 1 of the best-of-five semi-finals of the WNBA playoffs. Tip-Off at Wintrust Arena is at 7 p.m. CT; tickets are on sale now, or you can watch on ESPN.

Sky in three, for now, is the new Sky in four.