NU Notes: #10 NU Defeats #21 Illinois, 27-19
Champaign, Ill. – Peyton Robb and Silas Allred tallied a pair of pins to help the Nebraska wrestling team defeat Illinois, 27-19, on Friday night.
Along with the falls at both 157 and 197 pounds, competition was also highlighted by two more Husker bonus point wins and a sudden victory by Mikey Labriola at 174.
Action started at 125 where #5 Liam Cronin faced Maximo Renteria of Illinois (5-6, 3-4 Big Ten). Cronin used takedowns in all three periods to tally his fourth major decision of the season with an 18-7 victory.
At 133, Kyle Burwick battled, but fell by decision 3-0 to Illinois' #10 Lucas Byrd. With the Huskers (8-3, 4-1 Big Ten) holding the 4-3 advantage, #6 Brock Hardy extended the NU lead with a technical fall over #16 Danny Pucino. Hardy used six nearfall points and four takedowns to claim his 14th bonus point victory of the season.
Up next, the Huskers took the forfeit at 149 and the teams were tied 9-9 before the 157 bout. Top-ranked Robb got off to a fast start with a takedown and four nearfall points in Period 1 against Anthony Federico. Robb then was aggressive in Period 2 to grab the pin and help the Huskers take the 15-9 lead with five matches to go.
After a brief intermission, Adam Thebeau (165) took the mat against Illinois' #20 Danny Braunagel. Thebeau tallied escapes in the final two periods, but it was not enough as he fell by major decision, 14-5.
At 174, #2 Labriola defeated #12 Edmond Ruth in overtime, 8-6. Labriola led 5-1 after two periods, before Ruth used two takedowns and an escape to send the two into overtime. In sudden victory, Labriola scored the takedown to claim the decision.
With NU up 18-13 overall, #16 Lenny Pinto met #24 Dylan Connell at 184. Pinto recorded a takedown in each period and an escape to grab the 7-1 decision and his sixth ranked win of the season. At 197, #16 Allred secured the Husker victory over Illinois with a third-period pin over #10 Zac Braunagel.
To close the dual, Harley Andrews made his college dual debut as he faced Illinois' Matt Wroblewski at heavyweight. Andrews scored an escape, but Wrobleweski came out on top, pinning Andrews in Period 3.
Up next, the Huskers stay on the road to face Purdue tomorrow at 5 p.m. CT. Action will be streamed on Big Ten Plus.
#10 Nebraska 27, #21 Illinois 19
125: #5 Liam Cronin (NEB) major dec. Maximo Renteria (ILL) 18-7 (NEB 4, ILL 0)
133: #10 Lucas Byrd (ILL) dec. Kyle Burwick (NEB) 3-0 (NEB 4, ILL 3)
141: #6 Brock Hardy (NEB) tech. fall #16 Danny Pucino (ILL) 16-1 (7:00) (NEB 9, ILL 3)
149: Jake Harrier (ILL) won by forfeit (NEB 9, ILL 9)
157: #1 Peyton Robb (NEB) pinned Anthony Federico (ILL) (4:08) (NEB 15, ILL 9)
165: #20 Danny Braunagel (ILL) major dec. Adam Thebeau (NEB) 14-5 (NEB 15, ILL 13)
174: #2 Mikey Labriola (NEB) dec. #12 Edmond Ruth (ILL) 8-6 SV-1 (NEB 18, ILL 13)
184: #16 Lenny Pinto (NEB) dec. #24 Dylan Connell (ILL) 7-1 (NEB 21, ILL 13)
197: #16 Silas Allred (NEB) pinned #10 Zac Braunagel (ILL) (5:28) (NEB 27, ILL 13)
285: Matt Wrobleweski (ILL) pinned Harley Andrews (NEB) (5:35) (NEB 27, ILL 19)
Huskers Hunt Road Win at Northwestern
Nebraska Cornhuskers (13-9, 5-6 Big Ten)
at Northwestern Wildcats (8-14, 1-10 Big Ten)
Monday, February 6, 2023, 6 p.m. (CT)
Welsh Ryan Arena - Evanston, Illinois
Live TV: BTN
Mike Hall (PBP), Naz Hillmon (Analyst)
Live Radio: Huskers Radio Network (5:45 p.m.)
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln (107.3 FM/1400 AM), Omaha (590 AM), Huskers.com, Huskers App
Huskers Hunt for Road Win at Northwestern
The Nebraska women's basketball team returns to Big Ten road action Monday when the Huskers take on Northwestern in Evanston, Ill.
Tip-off between the Big Red (13-9, 5-6 Big Ten) and the Wildcats (8-14, 1-10 Big Ten) is set for 6 p.m. (CT) with live television coverage provided by the Big Ten Network with Mike Hall and Naz Hillmon on the call.
The game also can be heard across the Huskers Radio Network with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch on 107.3 FM and 1400 AM in Lincoln along with 590 AM in Omaha, Huskers.com and the Huskers App.
Nebraska is coming off a 71-67 win over Michigan State on Thursday night at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln. The Huskers built a 21-point third-quarter lead before a furious Spartan rally trimmed the margin to 68-67 with 12 seconds left. Nebraska sealed the win with 11 points at the free throw in the fourth quarter.
Isabelle Bourne, a 6-2 junior from Canberra, Australia, led Nebraska with 20 points and nine rebounds, including eight points and four boards in the fourth quarter. Bourne, a two-time honorable-mention All-Big Ten choice, is averaging 11.2 points and 6.4 rebounds.
Alexis Markowski notched her 10th double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds against the Spartans. The 6-3 sophomore who ranks second in the Big Ten with 9.6 rebounds per game, was named to the Lisa Leslie Award Top 10 on Friday, Feb. 3. Markowski was the 2022 Big Ten Freshman of the Year and ranks second among the Huskers with 12.1 points per game while leading the Big Red with 1.0 block per contest.
Sam Haiby added her first double-double of the season with 11 points and 10 rebounds against the Spartans. Since returning to the starting lineup against Michigan (Dec. 28), the 5-9 graduate guard from Moorhead, Minn., is averaging 11.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 2.2 steals. Over the last five games, those numbers have increased to 13.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.4 steals.
Jaz Shelley continues to be a leader for the Huskers. The 5-9 guard from Moe, Australia (pronounced MO-ee), is averaging team bests with 12.5 points, 6.5 assists and 1.6 steals. Shelley is 10 points away from reaching 1,000 in her college career (694-Nebraska; 296-Oregon).
Maddie Krull (Omaha, Neb.) rounds out Nebraska's starting five with 5.6 points, 1.9 rebounds and 2.2 assists on the season. Krull has scored in double figures in four of the last seven games. During that span, she has upped her averages to 9.6 points, 2.7 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.6 steals while knocking down 35.7 percent (10-28) of her three-pointers.
Nebraska Cornhuskers (13-9, 5-6 Big Ten)
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 11.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg
40 - Alexis Markowski - 6-3 - So. - C/F - 12.1 ppg, 9.6 rpg
1 - Jaz Shelley - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 12.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - Gr. - G - 9.6 ppg, 5.4 rpg
42 - Maddie Krull - 5-9 - So. - G - 5.6 ppg, 1.9 rpg
Off the Bench
21 - Annika Stewart - 6-3 - So. - F - 6.0 ppg, 3.3 rpg
14 - Callin Hake - 5-9 - Fr. - G - 5.5 ppg, 1.5 rpg
15 - Kendall Moriarty - 6-1 - So. - G - 3.6 ppg, 1.8 rpg
44 - Maggie Mendelson - 6-5 - Fr. - F/C - 2.9 ppg, 2.4 rpg
32 - Kendall Coley - 6-2 - So. - F/G - 1.9 ppg, 1.6 rpg
2 - Trinity Brady - 5-11 - Jr. - G - 2.6 ppg, 1.9 rpg
3 - Allison Weidner (Out) - 5-10 - So. - G - 10.2 ppg, 6.2 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Seventh Season at Nebraska (109-93); 16th Season Overall (302-202)
Northwestern Wildcats (8-14, 1-10 Big Ten)
10 - Caileigh Walsh - 6-3 - So. - F - 12.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg
20 - Paige Mott - 6-1 - Jr. - F - 8.4 ppg, 4.3 rpg
1 - Kaylah Rainey - 5-6 - Sr. - G - 5.1 ppg, 2.5 rpg
3 - Sydney Wood - 5-11 - Gr. - G/F - 10.9 ppg, 5.0 rpg
23 - Jasmine McWilliams - 5-11 - Jr. - G - 3.0 ppg, 2.0 rpg
Off the Bench
15 - Courtney Shaw - 6-0 - Gr. - F - 5.9 ppg, 4.8 rpg
2 - Carline Lau - 5-9 - Fr. - G - 5.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg
21 - Melannie Daley - 5-11 - So. - G - 4.6 ppg, 0.9 rpg
33 - Laya Hartman - 5-11 - Sr. - G - 2.4 ppg, 1.5 rpg
11 - Hailey Weaver - 5-11 - So. - G - 2.4 ppg, 1.4 rpg
22 - Alana Goodchild - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 2.2 ppg, 0.4 rpg
13 - Mercy Ademusayo - 6-4 - So. - F - 1.5 ppg, 1.3 rpg
42 - Anna Morris - 6-3 - Jr. - F - 1.3 ppg, 1.2 rpg
Head Coach: Joe McKeown (Kent State, 1979)
15th Season at Northwestern (249-212); 37th Season Overall (758-386)
Scouting The Northwestern Wildcats
Coach Joe McKeown brings his 15th Northwestern team into Monday night's game hungry for a second Big Ten win. The Wildcats are coming off a 74-64 loss at Penn State on Thursday, which followed their lone conference victory, a 70-67 win at Wisconsin (Jan. 29). Prior to the win over the Badgers, Northwestern was 0-9 in the league.
Despite an 8-14 overall record and a 1-10 Big Ten mark, the Wildcats are extremely dangerous. Their two losses to nationally ranked Illinois were by a total of nine points. They also played both Michigan and Purdue to 11 points before their 10-point road loss at Penn State.
McKeown's Cats have also prided themselves on their defense, but they have surrendered 71.3 points per game this season, and that number has grown to 76.0 points in league games. They have also struggled on the offensive end, averaging just 61.2 points in Big Ten action and 64.8 points overall.
Northwestern is traditionally outstanding at forcing turnovers, but the Wildcats carry a minus-1.9 turnover margin this year. A year ago, Northwestern carried a plus-4.7 turnover margin with National Defensive Player of the Year Veronica Burton. Two seasons ago, Northwestern's turnover margin was plus-9.3.
Caileigh Walsh leads Northwestern with 12.0 points and 5.0 rebounds this season. She leads the Cats with 25 three-pointers but has hit just 28.4 percent of her long-range attempts. The 6-3 forward is the only Wildcat to start all 22 games this season.
Veteran Sydney Wood gives Northwestern two starters averaging in double figure, pitching in 10.9 points and 5.0 rebounds along with a team-best 2.3 steals. The graduate student has made 81career starts for the Wildcats despite missing all but four games last year with an injury.
Paige Mott, a 6-1 junior forward, adds 8.4 points and 4.3 rebounds, while Kaylah Rainey and Jasmine McWilliams round out Northwestern's probable starters. The 5-6 Rainey leads the Cats with 3.4 assists while adding 1.7 steals to her 5.1 points per game.
Northwestern gets regular contributions off the bench from Courtney Shaw (5.9 ppg, 4.8 rpg), Caroline Lau (5.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg) and Hailey Weaver (2.4 ppg, 1.4 rpg), who have each played in all 11 Big Ten games.
The Wildcats are hitting just 38.4 percent of their shots from the field through 11 Big Ten games, including just 29.8 percent of their three-pointers. They also have hit just 67.4 percent of their free throws, while getting out-rebounded (38.5-34.7 rpg). League opponents are hitting 45.3 percent from the field, including 32.7 percent from long range, while connecting on 70.4 percent of their free throws. The Cats have a negative scoring margin (76.0-61.6) and a negative turnover margin (17.0-14.5) in conference play.
Nebraska vs. Northwestern Series History
Nebraska leads the all-time series with Northwestern, 13-8, including three consecutive wins against the Wildcats.
Last season, the Huskers worked their way to a 73-59 victory over Northwestern at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Senior Day in Lincoln (Feb. 27, 2022). Isabelle Bourne led three Huskers in double figures with 20 points on perfect three-point shooting (3-3), while Alexis Markowski added a double-double with 16 points and 12 rebounds and a pair of threes. Jaz Shelley added 17 points and five assists while knocking down 3-of-6 threes, as the Huskers combined to go 9-for-18 from beyond the arc.
All-American Veronica Burton led Northwestern with 16 points and four steals but went just 3-for-14 from the floor and committed five turnovers. Laya Hartman was the only other Wildcat to finish in double figures with 12 points. Northwestern went 8-for-23 from long range and 19-for-23 at the free throw line but hit just 8-of-36 (.222) two-point attempts against the Huskers.
In the last meeting in Evanston (Feb. 17, 2021), Nebraska battled to a 71-64 win, as Isabelle Bourne finished with 21 points and a career-high 17 rebounds, while Kate Cain added 22 points and eight boards for Nebraska. The Huskers overcame a 28-4 turnover deficit by out-rebounding the Cats, 52-33.
Nebraska notched a 65-63 win at Pinnacle Bank Arena (Dec. 31, 2020) to start the three-game winning streak. Sam Haiby hit a wild putback of her own miss as time expired. The play was ESPN SportCenter's Top Play. Haiby led the Huskers with 19 points, eight rebounds and five assists, while Isabelle Bourne added a double-double with 11 points and 10 boards. The Huskers lost the turnover battle, 24-7, but won the boards 47-35.
In the last three games in the series, Northwestern has produced a 70-22 (+48) turnover margin, while Nebraska has dominated the boards, 142-99 (+43) rebounding edge.
The Huskers are 6-5 against the Cats in Evanston and raced to an 88-56 win over Northwestern at the 2012 Big Ten Tournament (March 1). Nebraska is 6-3 all-time against Northwestern in Lincoln dating back to a 65-64 win at the Devaney Center on Nov. 29, 1980. The two teams will meet in Lincoln to complete the season series again on Nebraska's Senior Day (Sunday, Feb. 26, 2023).
Injuries Altering Nebraska's Season
While Nebraska is squarely in the hunt for a second straight NCAA Tournament bid (NET No. 39), the Huskers have had their journey through the season challenged with several injuries to key players.
Despite Nebraska returning five starters (Isabelle Bourne, Alexis Markowski, Jaz Shelley, Allison Weidner, Sam Haiby) from last year's team that went 24-9 overall and 11-7 in the Big Ten, Haiby missed 10 of the first 11 games this season with a leg injury suffered in practice (Sept. 12).
Trinity Brady, a fourth-year guard, started the first eight games in place of Haiby, before Brady suffered a concussion in the first half of a loss at No. 9 Virginia Tech (Dec. 1). Brady has missed the last 14 games.
Despite the loss of Brady and the absence of Haiby, Nebraska notched an impressive 90-67 road win at No. 20 Maryland (Dec. 4) in the first start by Maddie Krull as a Husker.
However, prior to Nebraska's next game with Wisconsin (Dec. 7), the Huskers lost Isabelle Bourne to an upper body injury suffered in practice. Bourne missed three games, as Annika Stewart made the first three starts of her career. Nebraska went 3-0 with wins over Wisconsin, Samford and Wyoming.
Bourne returned to the starting lineup for a 3OT win over Kansas (Dec. 21), but Allison Weidner suffered a season-ending leg injury early in the fourth quarter of the victory over the Jayhawks. Weidner has missed Nebraska's last nine games and underwent season-ending surgery (Jan. 10).
Weidner's injury hastened the return of Sam Haiby to the starting lineup for Nebraska's Big Ten loss to No. 14 Michigan (Dec. 28).
Nebraska was forced to make another adjustment to its starting five in a win at Purdue (Jan. 18), when Maddie Krull missed a start because of illness. Freshman Callin Hake made her first career start and played well with eight points and three rebounds. Krull also played huge off the bench, overcoming illness for one of her best performances of the season, finishing with 15 points in the victory over the Boilermakers.
The only two Huskers to start all 22 contests this season are Jaz Shelley and Alexis Markowski, despite Markowski battling multiple nagging injuries from preseason to the present. Shelley ranks second in the Big Ten with 35.1 minutes played per game.
Huskers Face Historic Strength of Schedule
Nebraska's game with No. 10 Iowa (Jan. 28) was its ninth this season against an AP Top 25 team at game time, and the Huskers are scheduled to face at least two more current top-25 foes. If those numbers hold, it would give NU a school-record-tying 11 games against AP Top 25 teams. No other Nebraska team has ever faced more than 11 AP Top 25 opponents (2000-01).
Since entering the Big Ten (2011-12), the Huskers had never played more than eight games in a season against AP Top 25 foes prior to this season.
Nebraska's game with Iowa was its fourth against an AP Top 10 team this season. The Huskers have never faced more than five AP Top 10 teams in the same season, and the Huskers will meet current AP No. 6 Iowa again on Feb. 18 in Lincoln, after playing current No. 18 Michigan in Ann Arbor (Feb. 12).
The Huskers could face additional games against AP Top 25 foes, if Illinois regains a spot in the rankings. The Fighting Illini slipped out of the poll Monday and are the top team receiving votes outside the top 25. Nebraska plays Illinois Feb. 9 in Lincoln and Feb. 22 in Champaign.
Isabelle Bourne recently became the 36th 1,000-point scorer in Nebraska history, achieving the milestone in the fourth quarter of NU's win over Penn State (Jan. 11). She is just the 22nd player in NU history to achieve the combined career milestones of 1,000 points (1,056) and 500 rebounds (568) joining teammate Sam Haiby (1,496 points, 597 rebounds) in that prestigious group.
Sam Haiby is one of just four players in Nebraska history to rank among the school's top 20 in points (13th, 1,496), rebounds (20th, 597) and assists (8th, 442). Haiby joins Maurtice Ivy, Anna DeForge and Emily Cady as the only other Huskers on that elite list.
Preseason All-Big Ten center and 2022 Big Ten Freshman of the Year Alexis Markowski (Lincoln, Neb.) is one of the Big Ten's top rebounders, averaging 9.6 boards to go along with her 12.1 points per contest. The 6-3 center owns 10 double-doubles on the season and leads the Huskers with 22 blocks.
Jaz Shelley opened Big Ten play with 29 points in a road upset at No. 20 Maryland (Dec. 4), before pumping in 31 points in a win over Wisconsin (Dec. 7). She also had 21 points and five assists in a loss to No. 14 Michigan (Dec. 28). She just missed a triple-double with 10 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds in a win over Penn State (Jan. 11).
Nebraska has knocked down 10 or more threes on nine occasions this season and is 9-0 when hitting double-digit threes. Nebraska's most recent double-digit three-point effort came on 13-of-28 shooting against Penn State (Jan. 11).
Kendall Moriarty put the exclamation point on the win over Penn State (Jan. 11) with a running, half-a-hook three from beyond halfcourt in the closing seconds to beat the shot clock. Moriarty's improbable shot, which came on a Nebraska baseline inbounds play, was Scott Van Pelt's "The Best Thing I Saw Today" on ESPN.
Husker Numbers to Watch
Sam Haiby needs four points to become the 13th player in Husker history to score 1,500 career points. Haiby is 45 points away (1,496) from matching Angie Miller for No. 12 on Nebraska's all-time scoring list (1,541 points, 1984-87).
Jaz Shelley is 10 points away from 1,000 in her college career (694-Nebraska; 296-Oregon).
Sam Haiby is two assists away from No. 7 on the NU career list (444, Amy Stephens, 1985-89).
Sam Haiby needs three rebounds to reach 600 in her career, and 14 rebounds to climb to No. 19 by matching Pyra Aarden (611, 1993-96) on Nebraska's career rebound list.
Jaz Shelley is two three-pointers away from 129 in her Husker career, which would move her into the top 10 on Nebraska's career three-point list. Shelley has 127 made threes in 54 games (2.4 pg) as a Husker. The only player in NU's top 10 to hit threes at a faster clip in her career is Natalie Romeo, who connected on 155 threes in 55 games (2.8 pg) as a Husker (2014-15, 2015-16). Amy Stephens, one of the greatest shooters and scorers in Nebraska history, hit 129 threes in 57 games (2.3 pg) in the first two seasons of the three-point shot in women's college basketball (1987-88, 1988-89). Nebraska's all-time three-point leader, All-American and 2014 Big Ten Player of the Year Jordan Hooper, hit 295 threes in 131 career games (2.3 pg).
Isabelle Bourne is 13 points away from catching Kate Galligan at No. 31 on NU's scoring list (1,069, 1993-96) and 18 points from Tina McClain at No. 30 (1,074, 1994-97). Issie's older sister, Callie, recently reached the 1,000-point mark in her fifth season at Idaho State, achieving the milestone at San Diego (Nov. 25) in career game No. 118.
Isabelle Bourne ranks No. 23 on the Nebraska career rebound list with 568 and needs six rebounds to catch Nafeesah Brown at No. 22 (574).
Alexis Markowski is 12 points away from 700 and 24 rebounds away from 500 in her career.
Maddie Krull is nine points away from 600 in her college career.
Huskers Claim Four Titles at Frank Sevigne Meet
LINCOLN, Neb. - The Nebraska track and field team began the Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational with four event titles on Friday night on the first of two days of competition at the Bob Devaney Sports Center Indoor Track.
The Husker women went 1-2-3 in the long jump with Ashley McElmurry leading the way with a jump of 18-7 1/4 (5.67m). Rhianna Phipps came in second in her first week as a Husker, leaping 18-4 1/4 (5.59m). Peace Omonzane was third at 17-11 3/4 (5.48m).
Garrett Kaalund was the champion of the 400 meters with a time of 47.84, just edging Nick Bryant who ran 47.90 to take runner-up honors.
Maxwell Otterdahl won the men's weight throw with a mark of 70-10 (21.59m). Josh Marcy and Nick Ronnfeldt joined Otterdahl in the top five, placing fourth and fifth with marks of 63-5 (19.33m) for Marcy and a personal best for Ronnfeldt, 59-7 1/2 (18.17m).
Taylor Latimer won the women's weight throw after a throw of 72-6 1/4 (22.10m), which was one inch shy of her school record. Tanessa Morris finished fifth after a throw of 60-10 (18.54m).
In the women's 400m, Ramonia Clarke covered the track in 56.62 to take third. Jade Hallgrimson added a third-place finish in the women's 5000m, clocking an 18:20.39.
Madi Scholl finished fourth in the women's pentathlon with 3,437 points, powered by a first-place clearance of 5-7 3/4 (1.72m) in the high jump. Scholl put up personal-best performances in four of the five events.
Midway through the heptathlon, Till Steinforth leads the field with 3,327 points. He started out the day winning the 60m in 6.87 and went on to take first in the long jump in a personal-best 24-11 (7.59m). Steinforth added a third-place finish in the shot put with a mark of 44-6 (13.56m).
Brithton Senior and Darius Luff both ran 7.78 in the 60-meter hurdles to qualify for tomorrow's final. Johanna Ilves made the women's 60-meter hurdles final after a PR 8.47. Lorenzo Paissan (6.78) and Andrew Bond (6.86) qualified for the men's 60 meters final, and Velecia Williams (7.75) earned a spot in the women's final.
Day two of the Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational begins Saturday with the heptathlon resuming at 9:30 a.m. at the Devaney Center Indoor Track. Running events begin at 11 a.m. and field events start at Noon.
Huskers Face Wolverines in Home Opener
The No. 4 Nebraska men's gymnastics team is set to host their first home match of the season against No. 5 Michigan this Saturday, Feb. 4. The meet will begin at 6:00 p.m. CT at the Bob Devaney Sports Center with a live video stream for B1G+ subscribers. There will be a poster giveaway with a team autograph session following the competition.
Last Time Out
The Huskers took the victory over Penn State last weekend (399.550-398.000), their first win on the road in a Big Ten regular-season matchup since 2013 against Illinois. Nebraska walked away with five career bests and four individual titles including Taylor Christopulos on floor (14.30), Cooper Giles on pommel horse (14.00), Donte McKinney on vault (14.80), and Zac Tiderman on high bar (13.95).
National individual rankings highlight Cooper Giles in sixth (13.763) on pommel horse, Taylor Christopulos in sixth in the all-around (81.800) and seventh on vault (14.613). On high bar, Donte McKinney lands in fifth (13.775) and Zac Tiderman in eighth (13.700). NU notched a season-high (71.800) team score on vault against the Nittany Lions to help claim the win on Saturday.
Ahead of the meet, NU ranks among the top five on events including second on pommel horse (66.900), and fourth on rings (67.950), vault (71.800), high bar (69.050), and the all-around (405.300).
Scouting the Competition
The Wolverines rank No. 5 in the NCAA standings leading into week four of competition. Michigan topped Ohio State this past weekend, 409.200-404.000. Michigan ranks second on high bar, third on rings, and fourth on parallel bars.
Michigan is led by freshman Fred Richard who claimed the Big Ten Gymnast of the Week award his second consecutive week of Big Ten accolades. Richard finished first on parallel bars (14.85) and high bar (14.65) against Ohio State. The freshman also collected a second-place position on pommel horse (14.05) in the meet. Overall, Fred leads nationally on high bar, and is second on parallel bars and all-around.
Huskers Host No. 16 Hawkeyes
Five Huskers Named Team Captains
Efry Cervantes, Griffin Everitt, Brice Matthews, Kyle Perry and Shay Schanaman have been selected to serve as team captains for the 2023 season after a vote by the Nebraska baseball players.
"These five guys have their own way of bringing leadership to our program," said head coach Will Bolt. "Each of these guys have been with our program for a couple of seasons now, so they understand the high standards of our program day in and day out. They have been great ambassadors for our program in welcoming our newcomers in the offseason, proving themselves as selfless teammates and consistent hard workers."
Cervantes, a fifth-year senior from Tucson, Ariz., has started 51 of his 76 games in two seasons with the Huskers. In 37 starts last season, he had four doubles, a home run, 10 RBI and 12 runs.
Everitt, a second-year captain and fifth-year senior from Lincoln, Neb., has started in 85 of his 90 games at Nebraska in two seasons. In his two years, Everitt has totaled 94 hits, 18 doubles, a triple, 11 home runs, 62 RBI and scored 55 runs.
Matthews, a junior from Humble, Texas, has started 80 of his 84 games in his first two seasons at Nebraska. Matthews has totaled 77 hits, 16 doubles, a triple, 12 home runs, 63 RBI and 59 runs. As freshman in 2021, he earned a spot on the Big Ten All-Freshman Team and the All-Fayetteville Region Team.
Perry, a two-year captain and fifth-year senior from Omaha, Neb., has started 16 of his 24 appearances on the mound for the Big Red over the last four seasons. In four years, Perry has notched a 5-3 record with 72 strikeouts in 62 innings of work, while limiting opposing batters to a batting average of .248.
Schanaman, a two-year captain and fifth-year senior from Grand Island, Neb., has 25 starts and 28 relief appearances on the mound in the last four years for the Huskers. Schanaman has totaled 181 strikeouts in 177.1 innings, while holding opposing hitters to a .236 batting average. As a freshman in 2019, Schanaman recorded all three saves of his career after making a career-high 19 relief appearances.
Markowski Named to Leslie Award Top 10
Lincoln - Nebraska sophomore Alexis Markowski advanced to the list of 10 contenders for the 2023 Lisa Leslie Award, which was announced Friday, Feb. 3, by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the WBCA.
The Lisa Leslie Award honors the nation's top center in NCAA Division I women's basketball and is named after three-time All-American and 1994 National Player of the Year Lisa Leslie, who was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2015.
The only sophomore among the 10 finalists for the 2023 Lisa Leslie Award, Markowski has been a force inside for Nebraska. The 6-3 center out of Lincoln Pius X High School has produced 10 double-doubles, including four in Nebraska's last six Big Ten Conference games. She ranks second among the Huskers with 12.1 points per game, while leading Nebraska and ranking second in the Big Ten with 9.6 rebounds per contest. She also leads the Huskers with 1.0 block per game while adding 1.0 steal. Markowski is the only player among the Leslie Award Top 10 who is younger than a fourth-year collegiate year.
The Lisa Leslie Award Top 10 candidates is a who's who of head-to-head match-ups for Markowski this season, including fellow Big Ten centers Mackenzie Holmes (Indiana) and Monika Czinano (Iowa), along with Virginia Tech center Elizabeth Kitley, Kansas center Taiyanna Jackson and Mississippi State center Jessika Carter. The other four contenders for the 2023 Lisa Leslie Award include three-time award winner Aliyah Boston (South Carolina), Dorka Juhasz (UConn), Quay Miller (Colorado) and Bella Murekafete (Washington State).
The 2022 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, Markowski was a preseason first-team All-Big Ten choice in 2022-23 after earning second-team all-conference honors a year ago. She was Nebraska's Offensive MVP after averaging 15.6 points and 8.6 rebounds in Big Ten Conference play as a freshman. She helped the Huskers to a 23-9 record and a trip to the 2022 NCAA Tournament.
This season, Markowski earned her first Big Ten Player-of-the-Week award (Dec. 19) after going for back-to-back double-doubles with 22 points and 10 rebounds against 2022 Mountain West Freshman of the Year Allyson Fertig from Wyoming (Dec. 18). It followed a 16-point, 15-rebound performance in a win over Samford (Dec. 10).
A national committee of top college basketball personnel determined the watch list of 20 candidates for the Lisa Leslie Award. In early February, the watch list was narrowed to 10, and in late February a final list of five candidates will be selected. In March, the five finalists will be presented to Leslie and the Hall of Fame selection committee with a winner being selected.
Fans are encouraged to vote for their favorite players daily at hoophallawards.com.
2023 Lisa Leslie Award Top 10 Candidates
Alexis Markowski, Nebraska (Sophomore)
Aliyah Boston, South Carolina (Senior)
Jessika Carter, Mississippi State (Redshirt Senior)
Monika Czinano, Iowa (Fifth-Year Senior)
Mackenzie Holmes, Indiana (Senior)
Taiyanna Jackson, Kansas (Senior)
Dorka Juhasz, UConn (Graduate)
Elizabeth Kitley, Virginia Tech (Senior)
Quay Miller, Colorado (Senior)
Bella Murekafete, Washington State (Senior)
Huskers Return Home for Penn State on Sunday
The Nebraska men's basketball team returns to Lincoln this weekend, as the Huskers host the Penn State Nittany Lions on Sunday afternoon. Tipoff at Pinnacle Bank Arena is set for 3:30 p.m. and tickets are available by visiting Huskers.com/Tickets, calling the NU Athletic Ticket Office at 800-8-BIGRED during business hours (8 a.m.-5 p.m., Mon.-Fri.) and at the Pinnacle Bank Arena Ticket Office 90 minutes before tipoff. Sunday's game will be carried on BTN and the Huskers Radio Network. It will also be available online on the Fox Sports app.
After spending a majority of January on the road, the Huskers play five of their next seven games at Pinnacle Bank Arena and Sunday's game against Penn State is the Huskers' first weekend home game since Dec. 10.
Nebraska hopes that a return home will provide a boost after finishing an extended road trip with a 72-56 loss to Illinois on Tuesday evening. Sam Griesel had 21 points and six rebounds as Nebraska led 50-48 with under 12 minutes remaining, but the short-handed Huskers struggled down the stretch with foul trouble and turnovers. NU had 13 of its 19 turnovers in the second half, but was still in position to win, trailing just 63-56 with 3:33 remaining.
|Game 24: vs. Penn State|
|Date: Sunday, Jan. 5 |
Tipoff: 3:30 p.m. (CT)
Arena: Pinnacle Bank Arena
On the Air
Radio: Sunday's game will be carried on the Huskers Radio Network with Kent Pavelka and Jake Muhleisen on the call, including KLIN (1400 AM) in Lincoln, KXSP (590 AM) in Omaha and KRVN (880 AM) in Lexington and will also be available on Huskers.com and the Huskers app. The pregame show begins an hour before tipoff.
TV/Online: Sunday's game will be televised on BTN with Kevin Kugler and Jess Settles on the call. The game will also be available online on the Fox Sports app.
While Griesel's 21-point outing was his highest since the season opener, the 6-foot-7 senior guard is second on the team in scoring at 11.5 ppg while ranking among team leaders in assists (4.1 apg, first), steals (1.4 spg, first) and rebounds (5.4 rpg, third). He is one of three Huskers averaging double figures, joining senior forward Derrick Walker (13.4 ppg) and junior guard Keisei Tominaga (10.3 ppg).
Penn State (14-8, 5-6 Big Ten) looks to bounce back after losing 80-60 at No. 1 Purdue on Wednesday night. Seth Lundy led PSU with 18 points and six rebounds, while the Boilermakers held Jalen Pickett to just 12 points, five rebounds and seven assists. PSU went 11-of-29 from 3-point range, but Purdue hit 14 3-pointers, including nine from Mason Gillis and got 18 points and 13 boards from Zach Edey. Pickett, a 6-foot-4 guard, who is on the Wooden Award list, ranks in the top 10 of the Big Ten in scoring (17.4 ppg, sixth), assists (7.0 apg, first) and rebounding (7.8, seventh).
• A win on Sunday would allow the Huskers to exceed their win total from last season and match Nebraska's number of Big Ten wins from a year ago. It would also give Nebraska Head Coach Fred Hoiberg his 150th collegiate victory. NU also looks to snap a two-game home losing streak to Penn State dating back to 2020.
• Sam Griesel's 20-point game at Illinois marked the 10th 20-point game by a Husker this season. It marked his first since the season opener, when he had 22 points in the win over Maine. It was his 15th career 20-point game.
• Nebraska started a lineup with three freshmen at Illinois (Sam Hoiberg, Jamarques Lawrence and Denim Dawson), marking the first time since the 2015-16 that the Huskers had three freshmen in the starting lineup. That season, Michael Jacobson and Glynn Watson Jr. and Jack McVeigh started four straight games during Big Ten play following an injury to Shavon Shields. It is the only other time in the Huskers' Big Ten era where Nebraska started three freshmen.
• Nebraska has now started multiple freshmen in each of the last three contests following Emmanuel Bandoumel's knee injury on Jan. 21. Last year, NU had six games with multiple freshmen in the lineup (Bryce McGowens and either Keon Edwards or C.J. Wilcher). Both Edwards and Wilcher were second-year freshmen who took advantage of the NCAA eligibility freeze because of COVID-19 in 2020-21. In Fred Hoiberg's first season, NU started multiple freshmen on four occasions (Penn State, at Michigan, at Minnesota, vs. Indiana).
• Over the last three games, Nebraska's freshmen have accounted for 36.4 percent of the team's minutes, including 40 percent at Maryland on Jan. 28.
• Nebraska got some good news on the health front on Tuesday, as Blaise Keita returned to action for the first time since Jan. 13. Keita, a 6-foot-11 sophomore, had been slowed since suffering an ankle injury in the first half of NU's game against Queens on Dec. 20. Keita had four rebounds and a blocked shot in 11 minutes of action, his longest stint of action since Dec. 10.
• Nebraska has nine active scholarship players following season-ending injuries to Juwan Gary (shoulder), Emmanuel Bandoumel (knee) and Quaran McPherson (knee). In addition, Ramel Lloyd Jr. will redshirt this season.
• Since Nebraska joined the Big Ten, the Huskers have had 21 freshmen (true, redshirt or covid year) start at least one game, and Jarmarques Lawrence became just the second Husker to reach double figures in his first start with 12 points against Northwestern. He joined Bryce McGowens (25 vs. Western Illinois, 2021) as the only two freshmen to score double figures in their first career start since 2011-12.
• With his 15-point effort at Maryland on Jan. 28, Sam Hoiberg became the 10th different Husker to score in double figures. Hoiberg set season bests in points (15), 3-pointers (three) and minutes (26) in the loss to the Terrapins.
• Nebraska has faced one of the nation's toughest schedules in 2022-23. As of Feb. 2, Nebraska's NET strength of schedule is third nationally. Michigan State (fifth), Wisconsin (seventh) and Ohio State (10th) and give the Big Ten four teams in the top 10 nationally in strength of schedule in the NET. NU has played a Big Ten-high 11 Quad 1 games as of Feb. 3.
• NU's strength of schedule is second in KenPom as of Feb. 2, which would mark the third time in Fred Hoiberg's four seasons that the Huskers have had a SOS in the top 10 (2019-20, 8th; 2020-21, 4th).
• Juwan Gary's injury in the first meeting against Illinois has hampered the Huskers' rebounding efforts. In Big Ten play, NU is 3-0 when out-rebounding opponents, but winless in conference play when being out-rebounded.
NU had a +2.5 rebounding margin in the 17 games that Gary was in the lineup and the Huskers were on track for its first positive rebounding margin since the 2016-17 season. Since then, NU has been out-rebounded by 7.6 rebounds per game.
• Derrick Walker is averaging a team-high 7.5 rebounds per game to rank 10th in the Big Ten in rebounding as of Feb. 2. It is on pace to be NU's highest rebounding average since the 2007-08 season. Since 2000, only five Huskers - Ed Morrow Jr. (2016-17), Aleks Maric (2005-06, 2006-07, 2007-08), Andrew Drevo (2002-03), Kimani Ffriend (1999-2000, 2000-01) - have averaged at least seven rebounds per game.
• Derrick Walker is one of only two Big Ten players this year to have a game of at least 20 points, eight rebounds and seven assists as he did against Minnesota on Jan. 7. Jalen Pickett has done it twice (vs. Quinnipiac on Dec. 22 and Jan. 8 vs. Purdue). Over the last three seasons (2020-21 to 2022-23), it has happened just six times, including twice by Husker players.
• Nebraska's 63-53 win at No. 7 Creighton on Dec. 4 marked the program's fourth-ever road win over a top-10 team and marked the Huskers' first win at Creighton since the 2004 NIT. The No. 7 Bluejays were the highest ranked opponent that NU beat on the road since 1997. As of Feb. 2, it is Creighton's only home loss of the season.
• Nebraska has been the one team to keep Zach Edey in check in 2022-23, holding the national player of the year frontrunner to just 11.5 points per game in two contests. Edey's two lowest scoring percentages came in the two games against Nebraska.
• Nebraska's win over Ohio State on Jan. 18 marked the Huskers' first win over the Buckeyes in Lincoln since the 2014 campaign and marked the first time NU had beaten the Buckeyes in consecutive games.
• The Huskers broke a couple of overtime losing streaks in the win at Minnesota on Jan. 7. The win snapped a six-game losing streak in overtime games dating back to the 2019-20 season and marked NU's first road OT win in conference play since Feb. 17, 2001.
Numbers to Know
46.3 - Nebraska is shooting 46.3 percent from the field over the last four contests. In the previous five games, NU shot just 43.0 percent from the floor.
8,138 - Miles that Nebraska basketball has traveled in January. Nebraska played its 10th road game of the season at Illinois on Tuesday. As of Feb. 3, the Huskers are the only power conference team to play 10 road games so far this season.
17.5 - Derrick Walker has been a weekend warrior for the Huskers this season. In seven weekend games (Saturday/Sunday), Walker is averaging 17.2 points per game on 62 percent shooting, 8.4 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game.
2 - Nebraska's Sam Griesel is one of only two Big Ten players - and 20 players across all of Division I as of Feb. 3 - averaging at least 10.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game. He joins Penn State's Jalen Pickett among Big Ten players to achieve the combined numbers.
8 - Prior to Saturday's loss at Maryland, Nebraska was 6-0 this season when shooting at least 50 percent and had won eight straight games when shooting 50 percent or better dating back to last season.
Huskers to Honor Wilbur Wood with Special Edition Jersey
The Huskers and adidas have combined for a special jersey that the Nebraska basketball program will wear three times this month. The Huskers' cream-colored jersey features two distinct pieces. The multi-color pastels along the sides represent the tearing down of obstacles to create something beautiful, while the goldenrods on the lettering show gratitude and appreciation for the contributions of Black individuals within the program over the years. The goldenrod is the state flower of Nebraska.
The men's jersey honors the first African American basketball player in school history, Wilbur Wood. Wood was one of the first black players nationally to gain prominence in collegiate hoops playing for the Huskers from 1908 to 1910. He helped the Huskers to three straight second-place finishes in the Missouri Valley Conference and later coached the Husker freshman team following his college career. The N logo on the front of the jersey is modeled after the jerseys the Huskers wore during Wood's tenure.
About Penn State
Penn State comes into Sunday's matchup with a 14-8 record following Wednesday's 80-60 loss at No. 1 Purdue. Micah Shrewsberry is in his second year at Penn State. Before taking the Penn State job, he had two stints as an assistant at Purdue (2011-13, 2019-21) and was with the Boston Celtics (2013-19) on Brad Stevens' staff.
The Nittany Lions are 11-2 at home, but just 1-4 in true road games this season with the lone win coming at Illinois in December. PSU relies on its 3-point shooting, as the Nittany Lions average 10.7 3-pointers per game while shooting 38.5 percent from beyond the arc. PSU also leads the Big Ten in fewest turnovers at 8.6 per game and has not had more than 10 turnovers in a game in Big Ten play this year.
Penn State is an experienced team with four senior starters, including a pair of fifth-year performers and a seventh-year senior. Jalen Pickett is the headliner of the PSU attack, as he ranks in the top 10 in the conference in scoring, rebounding and assists. He has five double-doubles this season, including a triple-double against Butler (15 points, 10 rebounds, 11 assists). PSU's other double-figure scorers are also excellent shooters in Seth Lundy (14.3 ppg, 43% from 3) and Andrew Funk (12.7 ppg, 40% from 3). PSU has gone with a smaller lineup the last two games with Michael Henn moving into the lineup. Henn has averaged 10.5 ppg, including 5-8 from 3-point range in that span.
Series History: Sunday's game is the 26th meeting with Penn State holding a 14-11 advantage. Since Nebraska joined the Big Ten, the Huskers are 10-12 against the Nittany Lions (10-9 in regular season; 0-3 in Big Ten Tournament). The teams played three times before Nebraska joined the Big Ten, a home-and-home series in 1980 and 1981 and in the second round of the 1995 NIT. The last meeting in Lincoln came during the 2020-21 season when Teddy Allen scored a career-high 41 points in an 86-83 loss to the Nittany Lions.
Last meeting: Derrick Walker had 20 points to lead four Huskers in double figures, but Penn State shot 68 percent in the second half in a 76-65 win on Jan. 21. Walker paced the Huskers with 20 points and added six rebounds and six assists. Keisei Tominaga had 13 points, while C.J. Wilcher and Sam Griesel chipped in 11 markers apiece, as Nebraska shot 45 percent from the field, but went just 13-of-24 from the foul line.
Andrew Funk had 23 points, including five 3-pointers, while Seth Lundy added 13 of his 16 points in the second half. Jalen Pickett added 12 points and 13 rebounds for Penn State. The Nittany Lions shot 49 percent, including 11 3-pointers, and out-rebounded the Huskers, 33-31.
Nebraska, which overcame a 10-point first-half deficit, trailed 33-26 early in the second half before the Huskers used a 7-0 spurt on a pair of Walker baskets and a 3-pointer from Wilcher to knot the score at 33 apiece with 16:45 remaining. The Huskers stayed in striking distance and trailed 45-41 before a Kayne Clary driving basket and a 3-pointer from Lundy stretched the lead to 50-41 with 12:22 remaining. Trailing 52-41, Tominaga got the Huskers back into the game, scoring 11 points in a 13-5 spurt that pulled the Huskers within 57-54 with 8:13 left. That would be as close as Nebraska would get as PSU used a 13-4 run to pull away.