Hebard gets hot in second half, lifts Chicago to 5th straight win

June 19, 2021

Ruthy Hebard

She isn’t used to starting the game on the bench, but Ruthy Hebard of Fairbanks is definitely accustomed to being on the court for crunch time.

The second-year forward got hot in the second half to lift the Chicago Sky to a 91-81 victory over the visiting Connecticut Sun in the WNBA.

Hebard scored 13 of her team’s final 51 points to help seal the deal for Chicago, which posted its fifth straight win.

Four times in the second half she scored the go-ahead basket, capped by a layup with 3:35 left that gave the Sky the lead for good at 78-76.

She finished 6-for-7 from the floor and added a career-high four steals. She also had an and-1 that put Chicago up 63-61 late in the third quarter.

Hebard, of West Valley High fame, is averaging a career-best 9.1 points and 6.1 rebounds per game.

The 6-foot-4 forward has started six of 14 games and 12 of 36 games for her career.

The former NCAA All-American was a four-year starter at the University of Oregon.

And last winter in her first season in the Turkish Super League she was an everyday starter and a five-time player of the week.

This year in the WNBA, Hebard’s game has come alive. Her numbers are up and her minutes are up, despite the team adding another power forward in five-time all-star Candance Parker.

There was some concern that Parker’s signing would cut into Hebard’s playing time, but actually the exact opposite happened.

No doubt the Alaskan is soaking up knowledge from the future Hall of Famer.

And as a result, Hebard has flourished. She already has three double-doubles and stays ready for when her number is called, like today.