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Nebraska WBB Season Opener Game Thread and Live Updates

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The Husker women win their season opener 68-46

NCAA Womens Basketball: Big Ten Conference Tournament-Maryland vs Nebraska Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Fourth Quarter

Two free throws by Kayla Mershon open scoring for the final quarter. The scoring in the early going is a back-and-forth tussle as the teams trade baskets.

One way you can see Ashtyn Verbeek’s play has improved from her freshman year is that her foul count is very low thus far compared to minutes played. Last season, she led the Huskers in fouls and definitely in fouls/minute played.

Hannah Whitish hit two more three-points in quick succession to reach 199 in her career. Taylor Kissinger is a three-point specialist, but in this game, she is working hard to get to the rim. She is effective at that when she’s healthy and it is good to see. She is also doing a nice job in offensive rebounding.

Mid-quarter timeout at 4:45. Huskers lead 62-40. They have outscored the Bulldogs 13-9 so far this quarter. The Cain block count is up to seven....oh wait, eight. Wow.

The A&M full court pressure and defensive pressure is causing Husker turnovers. As the clock rolls under two minutes, the Huskers lead by 19.

Freshman Kenzie Helms finds Taylor Kissinger for a short hook shot. I think that is the newcomer’s first stat for her Husker career. She is a true point guard and the likely heir apparent to Hannah Whitish for next season.

Final. Nebraska wins 68-46

Third Quarter

As has been the case with the other two quarters, the Huskers open the quarter on a 8-0 run and even forced the Bulldogs to commit a shot clock violation. Timeout at 7:48.

That stats are very balanced with a lot of Huskers contributing to the scoring and rebounding.

Verbeek extends the run to 9-0 with a free throw. Kate Cain records her SIXTH block of the game. I know she’s chasing the career block record, but she doesn’t need to do it all in one game. She then takes a court-length pass from Whitish and converts it into a running layup!

The run is 11-0 when the Bulldogs finally get a basket. They parlay that into an 8-0 run when Amy Williams calls a timeout at 4:24. Huskers lead 46-22.

At 2:29, Amy Williams replaces her entire lineup. It pays dividends as Kristian Hudson found Sam Haiby for a layup. The Husker offense this quarter has been a bit ragged (missing a lot of layups and short shots) and is being outscored by the Bulldogs 17-14.

The shot by Mershon at the buzzer is no good.

Huskers lead 49-31

Second Quarter

The Huskers open the second quarter with a 9-0 run to open up a 20-9 lead and force a timeout at 6:34. The Bulldogs are very good at challenging passes and forcing turnovers, but Nebraska is playing strong with the ball this quarter. The Huskers are running the floor well and seeing each other in transition.

A free throw for the Bulldogs at 5:48 finally puts A&M in the scoring column for the second quarter.

Nebraska’s defense looks improved even with the small sample size this season. That is a natural progression in going from a young, inexperienced group into a fairly veteran team. Coach Williams has always expected good defense, but this group looks to be on the same page more so than last year.

Every available player has checked in thus far (one minute left in second quarter). Amy Williams intends to use her entire roster. I like that. So many women’s basketball teams at this level play seven or eight.

Cain has four blocks already. She also gets a putback to end the half.

Huskers lead 35-14

First Quarter

Starters

One of Alabama A&M’s starters, Nigeria Jones, is a Lincoln, NE native and their head coach, Margaret Richard, is a former Husker WBB player. A&M player De’Asia Thomas can count both parents as Husker alums (dad was a wide receiver and I think they said mom was a basketball player). Great connections between these teams!

Freshman Trinity Brady is in the concussion protocol and is not available. Junior Taylor Kissinger is in uniform after missing the exhibition game with a minor injury.

The first points of the season come from Ashtyn Verbeek. The 6’2” post put up a nice three-pointer. Whitish followed it with another three to open an early 6-0 lead. Kate Cain stuffs her first block of the season early in the game.

Leigha Brown, Isabelle Bourne and Grace Mitchell are the first subs in. Halfway through the first quarter, the Huskers lead 13-4.

After the timeout, the Huskers grab four more points to open up a 17-4 lead (Brown and Haiby). The Bulldogs respond with a 5-0 run to close to 17-9. If I’ve got my count right, 10 of the 12 available players today have already been in the game (I haven’t heard Helms or Hudson’s names yet).

End of first - Nebraska leads 20-9

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Pregame Comments and Details

Well, the Hoiberg era started off with a “we’ve got a long ways to go” (which is completely expected when you turn over the entire roster).

Let’s see how season four of Amy Williams starts off. It is an unusual tipoff time, but who doesn’t love some Husker sports during lunch?

Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Alabama A&M Bulldogs
Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019, Noon (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (15,000) - Lincoln
Live Video: BTN+ [Husker Sports Network Audio]
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (11:45 a.m.)Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)Lincoln - 107.3 FM; Omaha - ESPN 590 AM; Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn

Go Big Red!