Bloomington, Ind. – Six Huskers scored in double figures in a balanced offensive effort, but the Nebraska women’s basketball team could not generate enough stops in the fourth quarter to extend its 10-game road winning streak in an 83-75 loss at Indiana on Saturday.
The Huskers, who lost their first true road game of the season, trailed 67-66 with 3:27 left, but the red-hot Hoosiers outscored Nebraska 16-9 down the stretch. Indiana secured its seventh consecutive Big Ten win to improve to 8-6 in the conference and 15-12 overall. Nebraska slipped to 19-8 overall and 10-4 in the conference.
Nebraska, which was playing its second road game in four days, shot just 38.2 percent (26-68) from the field. Indiana, which had five days to prepare for Senior Day for Hoosier seniors Tyra Buss and Amanda Cahill, shot a sizzling 46.4 percent from the field, including 36 percent from three-point range. The Hoosiers also buried 22-of-25 free throws.
Buss erupted for a game-high 37 points on 13-of-25 shooting from the field, while going 8-for-8 at the free throw line. Cahill added 16 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocks for Indiana. Freshman Jaelynn Penn added 21 points, as those three Hoosiers combined for 74 points – just one shy of Nebraska’s total in the game.
While the Hoosiers got huge games from their top three players, Nebraska’s deep roster got balance throughout. Janay Morton and Nicea Eliely each led Nebraska with 12 points, while Jasmine Cincore and Hannah Whitish each contributed 11 points in the Big Red backcourt. Freshman Taylor Kissinger added her first career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds, while fellow freshman Kate Cain just missed a double-double with 10 points, nine rebounds and three blocks. Junior Maddie Simon just missed double figures with nine points.
The Huskers also dominated the glass, outrebounding the home-standing Hoosiers 45-30, including 22-7 on the offensive boards. Nebraska turned the 22 offensive boards into 24 second-chance points, but Indiana managed 11 points on seven offensive rebounds to minimize NU’s advantage.
Nebraska turned the offensive boards into 12 extra field goal attempts, but both teams hit 26 field goals and nine three-pointers in the game. Indiana outscored Nebraska 22-14 at the free throw, as the Huskers were forced to foul late in the game, and the Hoosiers converted.
Nebraska got off to a solid start, working its way to a 14-8 lead through the game’s first six minutes, but Buss led an Indiana rally by scoring six straight points for the Hoosiers to close the quarter and send the two teams to the second quarter tied at 19.
The Huskers opened the quarter ice cold, missing their first seven shots from the field. The Hoosiers took advantage by pushing their lead to eight points on two occasions, the last time on a Buss jumper with 3:04 left in the half to make it 31-23 Indiana.
But Nebraska rallied to hit five of its final seven shots of the half to cut Indiana’s halftime lead to 36-32.
Indiana hit 46.2 percent (12-26) of its first-half shots, including 2-of-9 threes, while going 10-for-10 at the free throw line. The Hoosiers benefitted from a 12-6 edge in personal fouls in the first half.
Nebraska hit just 32.4 percent (12-37) of its shots in the half, including 4-of-13 three-pointers, while going just 4-of-7 at the free throw line. The Huskers dominated the first-half glass, 27-14, including a 14-1 margin in offensive rebounds. NU turned its 14 offensive rebounds into 12 second-chance points. Only one of Nebraska’s first-half fouls was called while crashing the offensive boards.
The Huskers rallied in the third quarter, tying the game at 47 with 4:50 left and again at 49 with 4:16 to play in the period, but Cahill and Buss scored nine points on three consecutive threes to rebuild a 58-51 edge. The back-to-back threes by Buss were both after IU offensive boards. The Huskers never fully recovered.
The Huskers close home regular-season action on Thursday when they tangle with Penn State. Tip-off between the Big Red and the Lady Lions at Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 7 p.m., with Senior Night festivities to follow the game. The Huskers will honor three seniors – Jasmine Cincore, Janay Morton and Emily Wood – in postgame ceremonies so fans are encouraged to remain in the arena after the game.