Las Chicago Sky were proclaimed WNBA champions for the first time in their history by defeating the Phoenix Mercury 80-74 in the fourth game of the final and resolving 3-1. However, for some players it may not be their first ring. Courtney Vandersloot, a 32-year-old guard, and Allie Quigley, a 35-year-old guard, already had one, which in December 2018 made them a couple. The ‘Vanderquigs’, they call themselves. This same season, both also won the Euroleague Women with Ekaterinburg.
His story began in the 2012-13 season. Vandersloot was already an important piece in the Sky while Quigley, after meditating even giving up basketball, had been invited to a training campus of the Chicago franchise. But before that, they had to decide who won the Slovak League. They both played there when there was no WNBA. Quigley’s team Kosice met Ruzomberok, Vandersloot’s team, in a five-game final. The first ones won. Days later, the players found themselves on the same flight back to the United States. And in the same limousine from the airport to the center where they will pass medical examination with the Sky. They had time to get to know each other.
Ultimately, Quigley carved a niche for herself in the team, but their relationship didn’t begin until the season ended and with each one at a point in Europe. They started dating when one was playing in Polona and the other in Hungary. In Chicago, they had to overcome fears of what it would be like to live 24 hours a day and if it affected their performance or the team. They were giving the news of their relationship in the locker room, that far from worrying, they celebrated it. “Seeing them on the court, no one would say that they are married,” said a colleague. “Courtney is more emotional and competitive than I am in matches in matches. She tends to yell at me,” says Quigley. “I’m tougher on her than on anyone else,” Vandersloot says.
Since then, they have always tried to be together. In the 14-15 season they played for Polish Wisla and in the three subsequent seasons they lived together in Istanbul, although in different teams: first Besiktas and Fenerbahce and then Galatasaray and Yakin Dogu. “It was the closest you can get to a regular relationship,” Vandersloot recalls: living together, working in different companies, professional trips … Life as a couple until, finally, in 2018 they were married in a ceremony with 100 guests.
That year, Vandersloot played for Ekaterinburg while Quigley played for the Italian Famila Schio. The following season, the two met again in the Russian team, great power of the Euroleague Women with the Spanish coach Miguel Mndez as coach. And always playing together in the Sky, that this campaign they reached their second WNBA final to win their first title.
Throughout the final four games against the Mercury, Vandersloot has averaged 11.5 points, 5.0 rebounds and 12.5 assists. In the fourth match he touched the triple-double with 10 + 9 + 15. Quigley has averages of 18.0 points and 4.2 rebounds. In the final duel he went to 26 points with five triples. Both headlines have been fundamental in the success of the Sky, which has given them another ring.