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Huskers Take on Golden Gophers

After its longest break of the season, the Nebraska basketball team returns to action Tuesday evening, as the Huskers face the Minnesota Golden Gophers.

Tipoff from Williams Arena is set for 8 p.m. and the tilt between the Huskers and Badgers will be televised nationally on BTN with Cory Provus and Stephen Bardo on the call. The game is available on BTN.com, BTN2Go and the Fox Sports Go app.

Fans can follow all of the action across the state of Nebraska on the IMG Husker Sports Network with Kent Pavelka and Jake Muhleisen on the call. The game will also be available on Huskers.com, on the Huskers app, on TuneIn Radio and on the TuneIn Radio app. The radio broadcast begins one hour prior to tipoff.

Nebraska (17-8, 8-4 Big Ten) has been off since completing a stretch of four games in eight days with a 74-63 win at Wisconsin on Jan. 29. In that game, the Huskers overcame an 11-point deficit in the final 10 minutes by outscoring the Badgers, 30-8, en route to picking up their first win in Madison since 1990.

James Palmer Jr. and Isaac Copeland Jr. combined for 45 points, 13 rebounds and four steals. Palmer had 21 of his game-high 28 points in the second half and matched his career high with eight rebounds, while Copeland tallied 17 points on 6-of-9 shooting, five boards and two steals. Glynn Watson Jr. added 15 points and five assists, as the trio outscored Wisconsin, 40-31, in the second half.
The win kept the Huskers in contention for a top-four spot in the Big Ten heading into the final three weeks of the season. With an 8-4 mark, NU is tied with Michigan for fourth place with six games to go. Nebraska's conference record is its best after 12 games since 1999.

Since the overtime loss at Penn State, the Huskers have won five of their last six, as Palmer has played at an All-Big Ten level. The 6-foot-6 junior is averaging 25.2 points per game in that span, shooting 51 percent from the field and 80 percent from the line while also chipping in 4.5 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game.

The Huskers will be seeking their first win in Williams Arena in 15 years Tuesday night against the Golden Gophers (14-11, 3-9 Big Ten). Minnesota, which was ranked as high as 12th in the country in December, has struggled of late, losing eight of its last nine games since a 13-3 start. The Golden Gophers pushed No. 24 Michigan to overtime before falling 76-73 in Ann Arbor on Saturday.

OPENING NUMBER
5.3 - Glynn Watson's assist-to-turnover ratio over Nebraska's last five games. He is ninth in the Big Ten in assist-to-turnover ratio with a career-best 2.3-to-1 ratio.

NUMBERS TO KNOW
1.21 - Nebraska's assist-to-turnover ratio which is on pace to be its best in nearly 20 years. In fact, the last time Nebraska had more assists than turnovers was in 2009-10.

21.4 - Scoring average for James Palmer Jr. during January, as he scored 18 or more points in nine of 10 games last month.

28 - Points Glynn Watson Jr. needs to become the 29th Husker to reach 1,000 career points.

70 - Nebraska is 13-2 when scoring 70 or more points and 4-6 when held to under 70 points. Nebraska's only two losses when scoring 70+ points was a one-point loss to Kansas and a two-point OT loss at Penn State.

139 - Nebraska's 139 blocked shots ranks ninth in school history and is the most since the 1999-2000 season, when NU also had 141 blocked shots.

SCOUTING MINNESOTA
Under Richard Pitino, the Gophers are 14-11 on the season and looking to snap a five-game losing streak. The Gophers are a different team than the one that came to Lincoln in December, as Amir Coffey (14.0 ppg, 4.1 rpg) has played twice in the last nine games because of a shoulder injury while Reggie Lynch (10.1 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 4.1 bpg) was suspended on Jan. 5 and has missed the last nine games. Prior to that, Minnesota was 13-3 and 2-1 in the Big Ten, but has won just once since then.

Junior forward Jordan Murphy is putting together an All-America caliber season, as he is among the Big Ten leaders in both scoring (17.5 ppg) and rebounding (11.7 rpg), while All Big Ten guard Nate Mason is averaging 15.7 points and 4.3 assists per game and has hit a team-high 58 3-pointers. Against Michigan, Mason had 22 points, while freshman Isaiah Washington had 26 points on 11-of-16 shooting and six rebounds.

SERIES HISTORY
Nebraska and Minnesota will meet for the 75th time on Tuesday, which is the most between the Huskers and any other Big Ten member. It is NU’s longest-running series in the Big Ten, as it dates back to February of 1902. The Gophers lead the all-time series, 54-20, while the Huskers have won five of the past seven meetings. The home team has won the last nine meetings dating back to 2012. Nebraska is 5-5 against the Golden Gophers as Big Ten members.

Prior to joining the Big Ten, NU and Minnesota met in non-conference action every year from 1995 until 2004 after not playing for 16 years.

LAST MEETING VS. MINNESOTA
Behind a season-high 29 points from Glynn Watson Jr., Nebraska topped No. 14 Minnesota, 78-68, on Dec. 5. Watson hit 9-of-17 shots from the floor and grabbed a career-high nine rebounds, to pace three Huskers in double figures. The nine rebounds topped his previous best of six and played a major role in Nebraska out-rebounding the Golden Gophers, 42-38.

Nebraska (7-3, 1-1 Big Ten) held Minnesota to season lows in points and field goal percentage (32.4), holding the Big Ten’s highest scoring attack to 20 points below its season average.

Watson scored seven straight points for the Huskers in a 7-1 spurt in the opening four minutes of the second half, stretching what was a 39-31 halftime lead to 14 and force a Minnesota timeout.

Minnesota (8-2, 1-1 Big Ten) closed a 17-point deficit to eight on two occasions, the last being 74-55 with 47 seconds left, but Isaac Copeland and Watson went 4-of-6 from the line in the final minute to hold the Gophers at bay.
Copeland finished with 12 points and five rebounds, while James Palmer Jr. added 11 markers and four assists. NU’s biggest work was on the defensive end, where the Huskers blocked nine shots, including three by Duby Okeke and forced 13 Golden Gopher turnovers.

Nate Mason had 20 points to pace Minnesota, but Nebraska limited Jordan Murphy to 10 points on 4-of-12 shooting, and 10 boards as he totaled his 10th straight double-double.

LAST TIME OUT
The Nebraska basketball team erased an 11-point second-half deficit, outscoring Wisconsin 30-8 over the final 10 minutes to rally for a 74-63 victory over the Badgers at the Kohl Center on Jan. 29.

The Huskers had trailed for much of the night and faced their largest deficit at 55-44 midway through the second half. Playing a fourth game in eight days, Nebraska dug deep and used a pair of 8-0 spurts to end the game on a 30-8 run and claim their first Big Ten victory at the Kohl Center.

James Palmer Jr. continued his impressive play, finishing with a game-high 28 points, his fourth 20-point effort in the last six games. Palmer scored 21 of his points in the second half, hitting 6-of-11 shots from the field in the final 20 minutes and 8-of-9 from the line. Isaac Copeland added 17 points and Glynn Watson Jr. chipped in 15 points and five assists.

The Huskers shot 41.1 percent from the field on the game and were just 4-of-19 from 3-point range. But Nebraska went 24-of-28 at the free-throw line, including 20-of-23 in the second half and 14-of-16 down the stretch.
Ethan Happ posted a double-double with 25 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Badgers, but the Huskers held Happ to seven points on 2-of-8 shooting in the second half after Happ erupted for 18 first-half points.

ABOUT NEBRASKA
*-Tuesday's game is the final game of a five-game stretch where the Huskers have played four of five on the road dating back to Jan. 22. The good news for the Huskers is that four of their final five games are at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

*-Nebraska will be looking for its fourth Big Ten road win, which would mark NU's highest conference win total since going 4-4 in the Big 12 in 1998-99. NU is looking for its third straight Big Ten road win, which would be the first time that happened since 2016 (at Rutgers, at Illinois, at Michigan State).

*-NU comes into Tuesday's game with a 17-8 record, eclipsing its best 24-game start in the Big Ten era. The 17-8 mark matches the Huskers' best 25-game mark in over 20 years, as NU was 17-8 after 25 games on two other occasions (2010-11, 1998-99) in that span. The last time NU had a better 25-game mark came in the 1991-92 season when NU went 18-7 after 25 games.

*-With a win on Tuesday, Nebraska will guarantee at least a .500 conference mark for the second time in the Big Ten era and just the third time since 2000 (2013-14 and 2008-09).

*-Of Nebraska's five losses dating back to Dec. 9, NU lost twice in the last 30 seconds (vs. No. 13 Kansas, at PSU) and had two others where NU was within a point in the last four minutes (at Creighton, at No. 13 OSU).

*-James Palmer Jr. enjoyed one of the most prolific scoring performances in school history at No. 13 Ohio State on Jan. 22 with his 34-point effort against the Buckeyes. It marked the second-highest scoring effort in a road game in school history and the most on the road by a Husker since 2006.

*-Palmer is averaging 20.0 points per game in Big Ten play, and is on track to be the first Husker to average at least 20 points per game in conference play since current Cleveland Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue averaged 21.8 points per game in 1997-98.

*-Palmer has shown the ability to get to the foul line, as he leads the Big Ten with 168 attempts through Sunday's games. Minnesota's Jordan Murphy is second with 160 attempts.

*-Nebraska's 98 points against Iowa marked the Huskers' highest total in a conference game since scoring 99 against Kansas State on Feb. 9, 2002. The Huskers' previous Big Ten era high was 93 points in a double overtime win over Iowa on Jan. 5, 2017.

*-Nebraska's defense has been its calling card in Big Ten action. The Huskers are third in field goal defense (.399) and held 10 of their last 11 opponents under 45 percent. In 10 games last month, NU held opponents to a combined 40.1 percent shooting.

*-The Huskers are averaging 73.3 points per game and is on track for one of the best offensive seasons in recent years. NU's 73.3 points per game marks only the sixth time in the last 22 years that NU has averaged at least 73.0 points per game through the first 23 games. The Huskers are 12-2 this year when scoring at least 70 points, including seven games of at least 80 points (7-0).

*-Nebraska's biggest offensive strength has been a balanced attack with three players averaging double figures, led by James Palmer Jr., who averages a team-high 17.6 points per game to lead all Big Ten newcomers in scoring. Palmer is currently on track to enjoy one of the top first-year seasons in school history, as the top three first-year scorers have been in Tim Miles' six seasons at Nebraska.

*-Nebraska relies on a pair of transfers in James Palmer Jr. (Miami) and Isaac Copeland (Georgetown), as the duo combines for more than 30 points per game. In all, 48.6 percent of the Huskers' offense this year has been by players in their first year in the program. Palmer has reached double figures 23 times, including a season-high 34 points at No. 13 Ohio State on Jan. 22, and is third in assists (2.6 apg). Copeland leads the Huskers in rebounding at 6.4 per game and is second in both scoring (13.2, second) and blocked shots (30, second). He has a team-high two double-doubles, including a 23-point, 11-rebound effort against Iowa on Jan. 27 and a 20-point, 11-rebound performance at Creighton on Dec. 9.

*-Junior Glynn Watson Jr. is in his third season guiding the Husker offense and is among NU's leaders in both scoring (11.0 ppg, third), assists (3.2, first) and steals (1.5, first). The 6-foot guard will make his team-high 71st career start on Tuesday and has a 2.3-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio this season. Watson is just 28 points from 1,000 for his career and is nine steals away from 10th place on Husker career charts.

*-Nebraska's 11-point deficit at Wisconsin was its largest comeback of the season (previous high was seven at Northwestern on Jan. 2) and the seventh time under Tim Miles that Nebraska has overcome a 10-point deficit. Over the past two years, NU has won three road games while overcoming a double-digit deficit, matching NU's total from the previous 20 years.


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Spring Game Tickets on Sale This Week

Nebraska fans can secure their tickets for the Red-White Spring Game presented by First National Bank beginning next week. The spring game will be played on Saturday, April 21 at Memorial Stadium, with kickoff set for 11 a.m., marking the public debut of Head Coach Scott Frost’s 2018 Huskers.

Tickets will be available to the general public on Wednesday, Feb. 7 at 10 a.m. Nebraska football season ticket holders will have the first opportunity to purchase spring game tickets with a 24-hour exclusive window beginning on Tuesday, Feb. 6 at 10 a.m. In addition, individuals who are on the 2018 Season Ticket Request list can purchase spring game tickets beginning at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

The first opportunity to purchase spring game tickets is one of the many benefits offered to season ticket holders. Nebraska fans may purchase tickets on-line at Huskers.com, by phone at 1-800-8-BIG RED or in person at the Nebraska Athletics Development and Ticketing office, located in the Stadium Drive Parking Garage (8 a.m.-5 p.m. weekdays).

All individuals entering Memorial Stadium for the spring game will need a ticket. The majority of tickets are $10 and all seats are reserved. A limited number of $20 club seats will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Fans are encouraged to purchase their tickets early as demand for the spring game is expected to be at an all-time high. For each of the past several years, more than 20,000 tickets were sold on the first day of sales, and Nebraska has drawn more than 54,000 fans for every Red-White game since 2004.

Nebraska will again conduct the Drug Free Pledge at this year’s game, and for the third year youth taking the pledge will do so from their seats. Youth eighth grade or younger taking the Drug Free Pledge will be admitted for free, but must secure a complimentary ticket.

UNL students will be admitted for free, but must secure a ticket for admittance. UNL faculty and staff can purchase a reserved ticket for $5 with a staff ID.

2018 Red-White Spring Game presented by First National Bank Date: Saturday, April 21
Kickoff: 11 a.m.
Tickets on Sale: Feb. 6, 10 a.m., Football Season Ticket Holders; Feb. 6, 2:30 p.m., 2018 Season Ticket Request List Members; Feb. 7, 10 a.m., General Public
Ticket Prices: $20 club seats (limited availability); $10 reserved tickets * UNL Faculty & Staff, $5 (Tickets should be purchased in person at Nebraska Athletics Development and Ticketing or over the phone to receive discount, must show staff ID at gate on game day); * Current UNL Students, Free (must secure a ticket via Huskers.com beginning on Feb. 6 at 10 a.m.)
Drug Free Pledge: Youth 8th grade and younger are encouraged to take Drug Free Pledge; Free admittance, but must have ticket (Fans can secure youth tickets when buying a regular ticket; limit of two complimentary youth tickets for each regular ticket purchased; Requests for more than two tickets per adult ticket must be made over the phone or in person at Nebraska Athletics Development and Ticketing before game day)
Radio/Internet: Husker Sports Network/Huskers.com


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GI Area Basketball Scores 2/2

BOYS BASKETBALL

Aurora 71, Waverly 61
Giltner 61, Dorchester 31
Grand Island 62, Millard North 49
Grand Island Northwest 53, Holdrege 41
Hastings 50, North Platte 47, OT
Kearney 71, Elkhorn South 53
Lexington 64, Grand Island Central Catholic 63
Riverside 66, Nebraska Christian 40
Twin Loup 64, Elba 15

 

Lou Platte Conference Tournament
Semifinals
Arcadia-Loup City 51, St. Paul 48
Ravenna 60, Doniphan-Trumbull 58

 

GIRLS BASKETBALL
Grand Island Central Catholic 53, Lexington 27
Grand Island Northwest 56, Holdrege 34
Millard North 53, Grand Island 31
North Platte 59, Hastings 52
Riverside 49, Nebraska Christian 47
Twin Loup 63, Elba 12
Waverly 58, Aurora 37


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UNK WR: #12 Lopers beat #10 UCO 20-12

Kearney, Neb. – The 12th-ranked Nebraska-Kearney wrestling team won five straight matches and sophomore heavyweight Jarrod Hinrichs pulled another upset to help theLopers beat 10th-ranked Central Oklahoma, 20-12, Thursday night at Kearney High.

UNK (20-1, 4-0) hosts the Newman Jets Sunday at 3 p.m. to close out the regular season. By winning tonight, the Lopers earn at least a share of the MIAA regular season title.

The Bronchos (13-4, 4-1) went up 6-0 after wins by second-ranked Eli Hale at 125 pounds, 8-3, and junior Blake Dauphin, 7-3, at 133 pounds. Dauphin recorded a take down and 2-near fall points to best 11th-ranked Bryce Shoemaker (Baldwin City, Kan.) in the first sudden victory period.

The Lopers rolled from there, however, taking the next five classes. Kansas sophomore TevinBriscoe (141 lbs.) amassed six takedowns in a 20-3 tech fall and then second-ranked Keith Surber (Sparta, Ill.) scored six in the second period to blank seventh-ranked Will Steltzen, 7-0, at 149 pounds.

Kearney continued to dominate as Colorado junior Zach Stodden (174 lbs.) had a 17-6 major and Pennsylvania true freshman Brayden Wills (165 lbs.) had three takedowns as part of a 7-2 win. Finally, Iowa redshirt freshman Matt Malcom upset 11th-ranked Bryan Dutton, 8-2, thanks to six early points.

UCO bounced back to win at 184 and 197 pounds, setting up Hinrichs (Geneva) and fourth-ranked Caleb Cotter to close the night. Riding a 17-match win streak, Hinrichsbested the 2017 All-American by a 5-4 score thanks to a third period escape. During the match, Cotter was dinged twice for stalling.

Hinrichs is now 31-6 (18-0 vs. D2 wrestlers) and has beaten five ranked wrestlers during a win streak that dates back to early December. Eighth-ranked Dalton Weidl of NU is up next.


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UNK WBB:Lopers hold off Washburn

Kearney, Neb. – Seniors Michaela Barry and McKenzie Brown both got close to double doubles and freshman Kelsey Sanger had another big effort as Nebraska-Kearney held off Washburn, 70-61, Thursday night at the Health & Sports Center.

 

The red hot Lopers (17-3, 9-3) are 11-0 at home and 10-0 in games decided by 10 points or less. Now with its highest win total nine years, UNK is tied with Pittsburg State for second in the MIAA.

 

Washburn (14-7, 6-6) beat the Lopers handily, 57-39, back in December and had won 12 of the last 14 meetings in Kearney. However, UNK got out to a 21-14 first quarter lead and hung on for its second win over the ‘Bods as an MIAA member thanks to a dagger by Sanger (Crofton).

 

Trailing for the final 34 minutes and by as many as 15 points, Washburn held UNK to 4 of 14 (29%) shooting in the fourth quarter. Back-to-back threes from post Axelle Bernard and reserve Hunter Bentley made it just a five-point game, 64-59, with 3:55 to play. That was as close as WU had been since early in the contest.

 

UNK missed its next three shots but thankfully so did the ‘Bods. With 70 seconds left, Sanger hit a three from the left corner after taking a pass from Barry (Battle Creek). After WU missed a triple, graduate transfer Alyssa Frauendorfer (Humphrey) hit a three from the same spot as Sanger to make it 70-59.

 

“Kelsey is really efficient and she picks and chooses her times to score it. She doesn’t need 20 shots to score 17,” said Loper head coach Carrie Eighmey. “Defensively, she went to work on a player that’s in the top five in scoring in the conference.”

 

Replacing an injured Jenna Gillespie (Holdrege) in the starting lineup, Sanger went for 17 points, seven boards (five offensive) and five assists in 37 minutes. The 5-7 guard hit the game-winner last Thursday at Lindenwood and then had 14 points Saturday at Lincoln.

 

“She’s growing in her confidence. The more college games she plays, the more comfortable she gets,” said Eighmey. “She’s everywhere on the court.”

 

The Lopers ended the night plus 14 on the glass, 41-27, and that led to 12 second chance points. UNK also tallied 14 of its points off 12 Washburn turnovers.

 

Individually, Brown (18 points and nine rebounds) hit four first half threes to reach her team-high point total with Barry (13 points, nine rebounds and seven assists) leading in assists. Finally, starting post Jaymie Bernbeck (Garden City, Kan.) made all four shots she took to end with eight points and five rebounds.

 

Washburn got a combined 28 points from starting guards Reagan Phelan and Alexis McAfee.

 

UNK hosts perennial league power Emporia State Saturday afternoon. The Hornets (13-6, 8-4) suffered its worst defeat in 23 years, 90-63, Wednesday night at Fort Hays State.


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UNK MBB:Bods rally past Lopers 87-73

Kearney, Neb. – Preseason All-American post Brady Skeens had a double double and Washburn closed on a 25-10 run to beat Nebraska-Kearney, 87-73, Thursday night at the Health & Sports Center.

Washburn (16-5, 10-2) remains tied with defending national champion NW Missouri State for first place in the MIAA while the Lopers fall to 9-12 (5-7).

The 'Bods came into the year having lost eight straight to UNK but swept this year's series. Tonight, they got another big effort from Skeens (28 points, 15 rebounds and three blocks) and shut down Kearney down the stretch.

Thanks to a 22 of 27 effort at the line and 18 points off 15 turnovers, the Lopers held an early 13-5 lead and then hung around after Washburn seized control midway through the first half.

Down nine late in the first half, UNK battled back to lead 63-62 with 9:07 to play after senior guard Yashua Trent (Chicago, Ill.) went 1 of 2 at the line. The lead didn't last long as Kearney went 2 of 12 from the field (0 of 4 threes) with five turnovers the rest of the way.

"We didn't execute very well down the stretch. They kind of put their foot on the gas, got some easy stuff in transition and Skeens asserted himself throughout the entire game," said Loper head coach Kevin Lofton. "We went to zone and it worked for one possession but they came back and made a good adjustment. Bottom line, they played well and we didn't."

Two free throws from Lane Rohrich (Pierce) kept it a one possession game at the 5:12 mark but Washburn got one of many layups from junior guard Randall Smith and then he hit a rare triple after a Loper turnover. That made it 77-69 and the deficit just grew from there with two dunks by the 'Bods closing things out.

"They play really good man-to-man defense and were taking us out of everything we wanted to do in the first half. We spread it out and went four out, one in and that kind of turned things a bit early in the second half," said Lofton. "You could see the edge there. We were able to beat them a couple of times last year and I'm sure that stuck with them."

Leading Division II in field goal percentage (73.8), Skeens finished 10 of 14 while also making six of eight free throws. The point total tied a career-high effort with 11 of his boards coming on the defensive end. Next, Smith had 16 points, seven assists and two steals with starter Isaac Clark and reserve Tyas Martin having 10 points apiece.

Kearney was led by York senior Ty Danielson who had a season-best 25 points on 7 of 8 (2 of 3 threes) shooting. Going 9 for 9 at the line, he also had seven boards and two steals in 27 minutes off the bench.

Preseason All-American forward Trey Lansman (Harlan, Ia.) was one of four Lopers to end with four fouls. He still managed 16 points, five boards, five assists, two blocks and two steals. Finally, Rohrich had 11 of his 13 points in the first half.

UNK hosts Emporia State Saturday night. The Hornets (8-13, 3-9) have lost six straight after a 58-50 setback to Fort Hays State on Wednesday.


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Hastings College MBB:Mustangs down Broncos

Sioux City, IA - The Hastings College men's basketball team got off to a very slow start against No. 9 Morningside and would never recover falling to the Mustangs 95-65 on Wednesday night.

Morningside raced out to a quick 7-0 lead forcing a timeout by the Broncos before Bart Hiscock ended the run with a layup out of the timeout.

Morningside would keep the pressure up shooting lights out while Hastings stayed cold from the floor as the Mustangs built a 28-10 lead midway through the first half and Hastings would be unable to recover.

The Broncos were able to cut the lead back to 13 when Jake Hansen converted on a turnover but Morningside would run off the final five points of the first half to lead by 18 at halftime.

Drew Callaghan led the way for the Broncos just missing out on a double-double scoring 16 points on 7-of-13 shooting while pulling down nine boards.

Hiscock added 15 points on 6-of-9 shooting and Kevin Harkins also finished in double figures with 10 points on 4-for-7 shooting. Hanses just missed double figures with eight points.

Hastings falls to 16-9 (6-7) on the season and will be back in action Saturday Feb. 3 as Morningside comes to town with tip-off set for 4:00 p.m. in Lynn Farrell Arena.


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Hastings WBB:Bronco women route Flames

Omaha, NE - The Hastings College women's basketball team overcame a slow start to blowout College of Saint Mary 88-60 on Wednesday night in Great Plains Athletic Conference Action.

The Broncos only led by just one 18-17 following the first quarter but opened up the 2nd frame with a 12-0 run.

Gabby Grasso got the run started with a layup off the Mackenzie Willicott assist followed by a Grasso jumper off the Taylor Menke feed pushing the lead to five at 22-17.

On the Broncos next possession, Sophia Pankratz buried a trey when Holly Hild found her open and then Emma Grenfell would go coast-to-coast for a layup to make it 27-17 forcing a Flames timeout.

After the timeout, Willicott ended the run with a layup as Hastings had built its largest lead of the game at 29-17 before CSM finally ended the run.

Hastings would go on to out score the Flames 25-6 in the second quarter as the rout was on.

Willicott led the Broncos with a game high 18 points on 5-of-10 shooting including going a perfect 7-for-7 from the charity stripe. Grasso added 14 points on 6-of-8 shooting while Shandra Farmer finished with 12 points and Hild added 11 points.

The Broncos shot 51 percent from the floor while CSM shot 42 percent with many of its baskets coming when Hastings cleared its bench in the 4th quarter.

Hastings would also force 20 turnovers while committing just 14 of its own. The Broncos also out rebounded the Flames 44-to-26. Rachel Jelden led the way in that category for the Broncos by pulling down a game high seven boards.

Hastings improves to 19-5 (10-5) on the year and will be back in action Saturday Feb. 3 as No. 13 Morningside comes to town with tip-off set for 2:00 p.m. in Lynn Farrell Arena.


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UNK Baseball:MIAA Poll released; Lopers in Denver this weekend

 

Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska-Kearney baseball team has been picked 12th in the 2018 MIAA preseason coaches' poll.

The Lopers received 31 points to be in front of Fort Hays State (16). No. 29 Emporia State (143 points; 11 first place) is the favorite with Central Missouri second (120; one first place) and Central Oklahoma (118) third. UCO is 28th in Collegiate Baseball's preseason Top 40 with fourth place Lindenwood (114) No. 17 and UCM receiving votes.

In 2017, UNK went 14-35 (7-29) to place 12th in the league. The 2018 roster features returning All-American catcher/designated hitter Dallas Schramm (Millard North), senior starting pitchers Bradley Brown (Aurora, Colo.) and Mitchell Robinson (Golden, Colo.), senior first baseman Ricky Trammell (Kansas City) and junior outfielder Pate Katechis (Longmont, Colo.).

The Lopers start the season this weekend with three scheduled games at Metro State in Denver.

 


 

 


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Huskers Fight for Season Sweep of Illini

Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Illinois Fighting Illini

Thursday, Feb. 1, 7 p.m. (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (Lincoln, Nebraska)
Live Video: BTN Plus
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha - ESPN 590 AM
Free Live Audio: Huskers.com/Huskers & TuneIn Apps
Promotions: Red Out (1,000 Free Replica Jerseys) / Nebraska State Employees Appreciation
Tickets
Live Stats

Huskers Fight for Season Sweep of Illini
• The Nebraska women’s basketball team shoots for its second sweep of a Big Ten season series when the Huskers take on Illinois Thursday night in Lincoln. Tip-off between the Huskers (16-6, 7-2 Big Ten) and the Fighting Illini (9-14, 0-9 Big Ten) is set for 7 p.m. (CT) at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

  • A live radio broadcast will be produced by the Husker Sports Network, with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch teaming up for their 17th season together on the call. The game will be carried for free on Huskers.com and over the air on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and ESPN 590 AM in Omaha. Free audio also can be found on the Huskers App and the TuneIn App.
  • A live video stream will be provided to BTN Plus subscribers as a BTN Student U production.
  • The Huskers defeated Illinois, 80-72, at the State Farm Center in Champaign on Jan. 10. Hannah Whitish led Nebraska with 20 points on a career-high six three-pointers, as the Huskers hit a season-high 12 threes against the Illini.
  • Nebraska’s 7-2 record matches its best nine-game conference start since joining the Big Ten in 2011-12. That Husker team, which advanced to the NCAA Tournament, opened with an 8-2 record and finished 10-6.
  • Five of Nebraska’s seven Big Ten wins have come against NCAA RPI Top 50 teams (through games Jan. 27), including at Rutgers (17), Iowa (27, twice), at Minnesota (47) and Purdue (49). NU’s only conference losses have come to RPI No. 6 Ohio State and RPI No. 22 Michigan in overtime.
  • Nebraska entered the week at No. 47 in the official NCAA RPI, its first top-50 appearance of the year.
  • Nebraska, which is a perfect 8-0 in true road games this season including 5-0 in the Big Ten, is coming off its most impressive performance of the season in a 92-74 victory at Iowa on Sunday.
  • Nebraska is one of only six NCAA Division I teams in the nation that is unbeaten in true road games this year joining Mercer (11-0), UConn (9-0), Louisville (9-0), Georgia (8-0), Mississippi State (5-0).
  • Nebraska is one of only two teams nationally (through games Jan. 28) that owns a plus-nine or better improvement in the win column over 2016-17. The team that has shown the most improvement is Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights are plus-11 in the win column at 17-6 (6-24, 2016-17).
  • Compared to last season, Nebraska is 8.4 points per game better offensively (71.2-62.8 ppg) and 12.5 points per game better defensively (63.8-76.3 ppg).
  • Nebraska Cornhuskers (16-6, 7-2 Big Ten)
    24 - Maddie Simon - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 11.2 ppg, 5.9 rpg
    31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Fr. - C - 10.5 ppg, 6.6 rpg
    3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - So. - G - 13.6 ppg, 3.8 rpg
    5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - So. - G - 8.6 ppg, 4.0 rpg
    34 - Jasmine Cincore - 5-10 - Sr. - F - 7.2 ppg, 3.9 rpg
    Off the Bench
    33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Fr. - G - 10.4 ppg, 4.1 rpg
    12 - Emily Wood - 5-5 - Sr. - G - 4.8 ppg, 2.0 rpg
    13 - Janay Morton - 5-10 - Sr. - G - 3.9 ppg, 1.1 rpg
    15 - Bria Stallworth - 5-6 - So. - G - 3.5 ppg, 1.7 rpg
    14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - So. - F - 2.7 ppg, 2.2 rpg
    43 - Rachel Blackburn - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.4 ppg, 2.1 rpg
    50 - Darrien Washington - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 1.1 ppg, 2.4 rpg
    Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
    Second Season at Nebraska (23-28)
    11th Season Overall (216-137)

    Illinois Fighting Illini (9-14, 0-9 Big Ten)
    35 - Alex Wittinger - 6-1 - Jr. - F - 14.0 ppg, 8.7 rpg
    50 - Ali Andrews - 6-2 - So. - F - 7.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg
    1 - Brandi Beasley - 5-7 - So. - G - 12.1 ppg, 4.2 rpg
    5 - Cierra Rice - 5-9 - So. - G - 5.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg
    30 - Courtney Joens - 5-10 - So. - G - 3.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg
    Off the Bench
    13 - Petra Holesinska - 5-9 - So. - G - 7.2 ppg, 3.9 rpg
    25 - Kennedy Cattenhead - 5-10 - RSr. - G - 5.1 ppg, 2.7 rpg
    3 - Alli Ball - 6-1 - Sr. - F - 2.5 ppg, 1.7 rpg
    23 - Jaelyne Kirkpatrick - 5-7 - Jr. - G - 3.8 ppg, 2.4 rpg
    24 - Jnaya Walker - 6-1 - Fr. - F - 1.6 ppg, 1.1 rpg
    2 - Lyric Robins - 5-11 - Fr. - F - 2.4 ppg, 1.6 rpg
    14 - Addaya Moore - 5-11 - Fr. - G - 1.9 ppg, 1.4 rpg
    11 - Cydnee Kinslow - 6-2 - So. - F - 0.3 ppg, 0.9 rpg
    Head Coach: Nancy Fahey (Wisconsin, 1981)
    First Season at Illinois (9-14)
    31st Season Overall (746-147)

    Scouting the Illinois Fighting Illini
    • Coach Nancy Fahey is in her first year leading the Fighting Illini but her 31st season as a head coach. Fahey, who came to Illinois from Washington University in St. Louis, has won 746 games as a head coach, including a 9-14 mark with Illinois this season. • Illinois already has matched its season win total from a year ago when the Illini finished 9-22, including 3-13 in the Big Ten, but Illinois is still looking for its first Big Ten win this season.

  • Junior forward Alex Wittinger leads Illinois by averaging 14.0 points and 8.7 rebounds per game. Wittinger also ranks third in the Big Ten with 64 blocked shots. Wittinger had 23 points, seven rebounds and three blocks in Nebraska’s 80-72 win over Illinois in Champaign on Jan. 10. She produced a triple-double at Penn State (Jan. 23) with 18 points, 10 rebounds and 11 blocks in a loss.
  • Wittinger, a three-year starter, is the lone junior in a starting five that features four sophomores, including returning starting point guard Brandi Beasley. The 5-7 sophomore is averaging 12.1 points, 4.2 rebounds and team highs of 3.6 assists and 1.3 steals per game. Beasley had a double-double with 10 points and 11 assists in the first meeting this season in Champaign. It was her second double-double against the Huskers in her career, joining 17 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds in the Illini’s 2017 regular-season win over the Big Red in Champiaign on Jan. 15, 2017.
  • Sophomore forward Ali Andrews has added 7.7 points and 3.3 rebounds per game. Last season, the 6-2 Andrews scored a game-high 24 points while hitting 6-of-10 threes in the Illini’s Big Ten Tournament win over Nebraska. Andrews managed 13 points on 3-of-6 three-point shooting against Nebraska in the first meeting this season. She leads the Illini with 29 threes (.392) this season.
  • Sophomore guard Cierra Rice has made eight Big Ten starts, averaging 6.7 points and 2.8 rebounds in conference play. She had five points and three rebounds in 18 minutes in this season’s first meeting with Nebraska. Rice came off the bench in non-conference play behind junior guard Jaelyne Kirkpatrick, but Kirkpatrick was injured at the start of Big Ten play
  • Kirkpatrick, a 5-7 junior guard, has averaged 2.0 points in 12.7 minutes per game since returning to action three games ago for the Illini.
  • Courtney Joens (3.8 ppg, 1.9 rpg) has assumed a part-time starting role for Illinois in Big Ten play, averaging 5.1 points and 2.2 rebounds in league play as primarily a three-point specialist. Joens came off the bench to score 13 points on 3-of-5 three-point shooting in the first meeting this season with NU.
  • Sophomore Petra Holesinska, a 5-9 guard from the Czech Republic, led the Illini with 19 points in last year’s regular-season win over the Huskers. Holesinska hit a pair of threes while going 7-for-11 from the field. She added six rebounds and three assists. She was even better in the Big Ten Tournament, scoring 21 points, including 9-of-12 free throws, while adding four assists. In this season’s first meeting, Holesinska scored just two points and did not hit a field goal. She is averaging 5.7 points and 3.4 rebounds this season in Big Ten play after getting 18 points off the bench in a loss to Wisconsin (Jan. 28).
  • Fifth-year senior Kennedy Cattenhead was also a regular starter in non-conference play for the Illini. She has averaged 5.1 points and 2.7 rebounds, but the 5-10 guard has a turnover-to-assist ratio of 2.7-to-1 (30-11) on the season. She had four points in six minutes in the first meeting with Nebraska this season.
  • Alli Ball (2.5 ppg, 1.7 rpg) and Jnaya Walker (1.6 ppg, 1.1 rpg) have also been regular contributors in the Illini playing rotation.
  • Illinois is averaging just 57.9 points per game in the Big Ten, while allowing a whopping 78.3 points per contest. The Illini have a minus-8.0 team rebound margin and a minus-4.1 team turnover margin in conference play, while shooting just 36.4 percent from the field, including 31.5 percent from three-point range. Big Ten opponents are hitting 43.3 percent from three-point range against Illinois.
  • Nebraska vs. Illinois Series History
    • Nebraska owns an 11-5 edge in the all-time series with Illinois, including an 80-72 victory over the Fighting Illini in Champaign on Jan. 10, 2018. Hannah Whitish led four Huskers in double figures with 20 points and a career-high six three-pointers. Maddie Simon added 11 points and Janay Morton contributed a season-high 10 points. Kate Cain pitched in 10 points and four rebounds, while Jasmine Cincore added eight points and a game-high 10 rebounds for the Big Red.

  • The Fighting Illini swept a pair of games against the Huskers last season, including a 79-59 win over NU at the State Farm Center on Jan. 15, 2017. The Illini also eliminated Nebraska from the Big Ten Tournament, 79-70, at Bankers Life Fieldhosue in Indianapolis on March 1.
  • Last year’s regular-season loss to Illinois snapped Nebraska’s six-game winning streak in the series. It also ended a four-game road winning streak for the Huskers in Champaign and a stretch of five straight wins away from home for the Huskers against Illinois.
  • Overall, Nebraska is 5-2 against Illinois in Champaign, 1-2 on neutral courts and 5-1 against Illinois in Lincoln. Nebraska has won three straight games against Illinois in Lincoln.
  • Nebraska’s series with Illinois dates back to an 89-86 Husker win over the Illini at the Bob Devaney Sports Center in Lincoln on March 3, 1982.
  • Husker Nuggets
    • A win for Nebraska over Illinois would be the Huskers’ 17th victory of the season, which would be a plus-10-win improvement from last season (7).

  • A win would be NU’s fifth straight after recording four consecutive wins against current NCAA top-50 RPI teams. Iowa (twice), Rutgers and Purdue.
  • At 8-0 in true road games, Nebraska is one of only six teams in NCAA Division I (349 teams) unbeaten in true road contests, joining UConn, Mississippi State, Louisville, Georgia and Mercer.
  • Kate Cain ranks third on Nebraska’s season block list with 75. She needs two blocks to match Catheryn Redmon (77, 2010-11) in second on that list. The Nebraska school record is 78 by Olympic bronze medalist Danielle Page (78, 2007-08). Cain has at least one blocked shot in all 22 games this season.
  • Cain’s 75 blocks rank No. 4 in the nation while her 3.4 blocks per game rank seventh in the country through games Jan. 28. No Nebraska individual has ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a career, and only two Huskers (Danielle Page, 2.4 bpg, 2007-08; Catheryn Redmon, 2.5 bpg, 2010-11) have ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a single season.
  • Nebraska freshman Taylor Kissinger has come off the bench for the Huskers in their first nine Big Ten games. The 6-1 guard from Minden, Neb., is averaging 10.4 points per game on the year. Kissinger averaged a team-best 14.0 points per game over the first seven games this season as a starter before missing Nebraska’s final six non-conference contests with a knee injury.
  • Junior Maddie Simon (+7.1 ppg) is one of the Big Ten’s most improved players in 2017-18. Simon, a 6-2 forward, is averaging 11.2 points per game after averaging 4.1 points through all 29 games a year ago. Simon has scored in double figures in 10 of the last 13 games. She had just five double-digit efforts in her first two seasons combined.
  • Nebraska Streaks
    • Nebraska heads into Thursday’s game with Illinois riding a four-game winning streak.

  • The Huskers have won nine consecutive games away from Pinnacle Bank Arena, including seven straight true road games and five consecutive Big Ten road games.
  • Sophomore guard Hannah Whitish (39) owns the longest current streak of consecutive starts by a Husker. Nebraska’s second-longest streak is 21 games by freshman Kate Cain.
  • Whitish is the only Husker to start all 22 games this season.
  • Nebraska has featured the same starting lineup in 14 consecutive games.
  • Whitish has posted at least one assist in 24 consecutive games, and has three or more assists in 20 games this season.
  • Whitish has knocked down a three-pointer in 19 consecutive games.
  • Kate Cain has blocked at least one shot in each of the first 22 games of her career. She has 19 games with two or more blocks.
  • Cain has at least two rebounds every game this season. • Maddie Simon has at least three rebounds in all 18 of her games this season.
  • The Huskers have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 302 straight regular-season games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008.
  • Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 181 consecutive games.

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