The Huskers have been getting a lot of rock fights lately. The latest version comes with only a handful of masochist fans watching along in the heartland after having done the same thing just one night prior. Tonight, the Huskers did come away victorious, but in the ugliest of games, defeating the Loyola Marymount Lions 50-42 in overtime.
Just when you think Nebraska had moved on from that identity and become a team with playmakers and energy and excitement, a product that is all too familiar to diehard fans: poor shot selection, stagnant offense, sloppy turnovers, untimely mistakes, poor basketball IQ, and an inability to rebound. But, hey, they played good defense.
After falling to the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors less than 24 hours ago, the Huskers took the floor on their second game in the Diamondhead Classic to take on LMU. The small Los Angeles college whose basketball program is in the middle of a rebuild in the first season under the direction of Mike Dunlap. The Lions really had no business being in this game vs. the Huskers, but right now, the Huskers are struggling to find an identity on offense and any opponent, regardless of their pedigree is a difficult challenge for the Huskers.
LMU suffered from their own offensive challenges, especially in the first half. The Husker defense, despite getting out rebounded 14-7, held the Lions to just 16 points, a season low for LMU and the lowest points allowed in a half since Tim Miles took over the progam. For a while, there was a time when it was hard to tell if LMU would have more turnovers or points.
In the second half, however, it was the Huskers would not be able to score. Not willing to be outdone, the Huskers only scored 14 points in the second half, letting LMU back in the game. The Lions would scratch and claw their way back into the game before sending it to overtime.
In the extra frame, the Huskers finally saw their leader step up. After the Lions scored the first points of OT, the Huskers scored the next 8, including back to back 3’s from Terran Petteway to give NU the lead for good. After only scoring 14 points in the second half, the Huskers put up 15 in overtime.
The Huskers continue to battle their offensive deficiencies while they wait for Moses Abraham and Leslee Smith to return to the lineup. NU will get another opportunity to figure it out when they take on the Ohio Bobcats on Christmas Day at 3 pm.