Angel Reese Defends Hitting Caitlin Clark In The Head: ‘It’s Basketball Play’

by Grace Somes
Angel Reese and Caitlin Clark || Image credit: @angelreese5 @caitlinclark22

In the third quarter of Sunday’s game, Chicago Sky forward Angel Reese struck Indiana Fever guard Caitlin Clark in the head while she was driving to the basket. This resulted in a Flagrant 1 foul call.

On Sunday afternoon, WNBA rookies Caitlin Clark and Angel Reese faced off in an eagerly awaited rematch between the Chicago Sky and the Indiana Fever.

With the game finely balanced and just under three minutes left in the third quarter, the Fever were leading 63-62 when the incident unfolded. As teammate Isabelle Harrison was in pursuit of the ball, Reese approached from behind, attempting to block but inadvertently striking Clark in the head. After a thorough review, officials upgraded the call from a personal foul to a Flagrant 1.

Since that would have required needless and excessive contact and resulted in Reese’s automatic expulsion from the game, the call was not upgraded to a Flagrant 2.

That was Reese’s fourth personal foul, so she was benched for the remainder of the third quarter. Sky head coach Teresa Weatherspoon forced her to start the fourth quarter, so she did not sit down for very long.

Clark stated at the press conference held after the game that she didn’t believe Reese hit her on purpose.

“What was going through my mind is I gotta make these two free throws,” Clark said. “That’s all I’m thinking about. It’s just part of basketball. It is what it is. She was trying to make a play on the ball and get the block. It happens.”

Clark also explained how the situation came into plying, stating that her actions had no malicious intent.

“It was a basketball play. I can’t control the refs. They affected the game obviously a lot today,” Reese said after the game. “I’m always going for the ball. Y’all are going to play that clip 20 times before Monday.”

In the last frame, Reese received her fifth foul and returned to the bench. She returned with 5:30 left in the game.

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