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Nebraska WBB vs Manhattan Preview

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The 9-1 Husker women close out the non-conference schedule on Sunday vs the Jaspers

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: FEB 04 Women’s - Maryland at Nebraska Photo by John Peterson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Nebraska Cornhuskers (9-1) vs. Manhattan Jaspers (3-6)
Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019, Noon (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (15,000) - Lincoln, Neb.
Promotion: Husker Holiday Ornament
Live Video: BTN+
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (11:45 a.m.) Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst) Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha-ESPN 590 AM; Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn

The Huskers are a team that is fairly balanced in scoring and their opponent this weekend is one of the few teams on the schedule who operates the same way. The Manhattan Jaspers do not have a sterling record, but they are a competitive team - most of their losses have been close.

After a somewhat lackluster performance against Oral Roberts, the Huskers cannot overlook any team.

Sophomore Sam Haiby earned her second appearance on the Big Ten Weekly Honor Roll after a 20-point performance in a 77-67 win over Oral Roberts (Dec. 14). Haiby went 8-for-14 from the field and 3-for-3 at the free throw line while adding five rebounds and snagging a career-high four steals.

Junior Kate Cain had a big game in the win over ORU, pumping in 15 points on 7-of-9 shooting to go along with a season-high eight rebounds and four blocked shots. Cain needs five blocks on Sunday to catch Catheryn Redmon (216, 2008-11) at No. 2 on Nebraska’s career block list. Cain, a 6-5 center from Middletown, N.Y., has a special connection with the Manhattan program. Her father, Tim, graduated as Manhattan’s all-time leading scorer (1,872 points) and was a two-time honorable-mention All-American by The Sporting News.

Nebraska Cornhuskers (9-1, 0-0 Big Ten)
13 - Ashtyn Veerbeek - 6-2 - So. - F - 9.3 ppg, 6.4 rpg
31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Jr. - C - 9.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg
3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - Sr. - G - 8.4 ppg, 3.5 rpg
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - So. - G - 10.8 ppg, 3.0 rpg
5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - Sr. - G - 8.4 ppg, 5.2 rpg

Off the Bench
32 - Leigha Brown - 6-1 - So. - F - 13.7 ppg, 3.3 rpg
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Fr. - F - 4.6 ppg, 4.5 rpg
14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 2.2 ppg, 1.4 rpg
44 - Kayla Mershon - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg
11 - Kristian Hudson - 5-5 - RSr. - G - 1.6 ppg, 1.0 rpg
1 - Makenzie Helms - 5-8 - Fr. - G - 0.5 ppg, 0.5 rpg

Out for Season
33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Jr. - G - 8.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg

Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998) Fourth Season at Nebraska (51-50); 13th Season Overall (244-159)

Manhattan Jaspers (3-6, 0-1 MAAC)
12 - Julie Høier - 6-2 - Sr. - F - 6.1 ppg, 4.0 rpg
22 - Courtney Warley - 6-3 - Jr. - C - 9.9 ppg, 7.7 rpg
2 - Gabby Cajou - 5-4 - Sr. - G - 9.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg
11 - Emily LaPointe - 5-10 - Fr. - G - 9.6 ppg, 4.3 rpg
15 - Sydney Watkins - 5-8 - So. - G - 6.8 ppg, 0.8 rpg

Off the Bench
5 - Lynette Taitt - 5-5 - Jr. - G - 6.2 ppg, 4.6 rpg
13 - Lizahya Morgan - 5-3 - Jr. - G - 5.0 ppg, 1.7 rpg
25 - Pamela Miceus - 6-1 - Sr. - F - 4.1 ppg, 4.9 rpg
00 - Kania Pollock - 5-8 - So. - G - 2.3 ppg, 1.0 rpg
10 - Sini Mäkelä - 5-8 - Jr. - G - 2.2 ppg, 1.0 rpg
20 - Nyala Pendergrass - 5-9 - Jr. - G/F - 0.9 ppg, 1.0 rpg
21 - Christina Katsamouri - 6-0 - Fr. - G/F - 0.0 ppg, 0.3 rpg

Head Coach: Heather Vulin (Minnesota, 1999) Fourth Season at Manhattan (36-65); Fourth Season Overall: (36-65)

Scouting Manhattan

Manhattan is a coming off a 62-60 overtime loss in its MAAC opener at Monmouth on Tuesday - its fourth road loss of the season. The Jaspers are just 1-4 away from Draddy Gymnasium this season. Coach Heather Vulin is in her fourth season leading the Jaspers, who finished with a 12-19 overall record last season that included a 9-9 mark in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC).

Junior Courtney Warley, a 6-3 center, is Manhattan’s leading scorer and rebounder at 9.9 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. Warley was the 2019 MAAC Defensive Player of the Year and was a third-team All-MAAC selection.

Junior guard Lynette Taitt is averaging 6.2 points and a team-best 2.1 steals per game. Taitt also ranks second on the team with 2.3 assists, but has not hit a three-pointer on the season.

Freshman Emily LaPointe, a 5-10 guard, has added a scoring spark for the offense by averaging 9.6 points per game. She is also tied for second on the team with 13 three-pointers. LaPointe had eight points, six rebounds, three assists and two steals in 40 minutes at Monmouth.

As a team, Manhattan is shooting 36.3 percent from the field field, including 30.5 percent (51-167) from three-point range. The Jaspers have hit 69.1 percent of their free throws. Manhattan owns a plus-3.8 team turnover margin, but a minus-6.2 team rebounding margin.

This should be a game that the Huskers can take charge of early. The Jaspers are not a high-percentage shooting team and Nebraska’s defense has been good at holding opponents below their shooting average for the most part. The Huskers have improved in rebounding in 2019 and should have the advantage in this game on the glass.

It has been a while since Nebraska took the floor, and given their rusty performance vs Oral Roberts, I expect we will see more in this game, especially early. However, I expect the Huskers should bring a 10-1 record when they start conference play on December 28 against Iowa.