Sam Haiby finished with 12 points while Kate Cain and Ashtyn Veerbeek each managed 10, but No. 12 Iowa surged to a 74-58 win on senior night in Lincoln. The loss dropped the Huskers to 8-9 in the Big Ten and 13-15 overall.
I didn’t get to watch the game and was listening while driving through a section of Nebraska where data access is a bit...”here and there”. In other words, I didn’t get to hear much either. (Bright spot - Ranchhand 2’s team is going to the state tournament!). What I did hear made me quite hopeful for the Husker women next season. The freshman played big, and sophomore Cain had one of her best offensive performances of the season.
Maddie Simon, the lone senior night honoree had a very good game as well. By all accounts, she is the very definition of senior leader and team player.
The Huskers trailed 52-47 at the end of three quarters, but Nebraska went just 4-for-13 from the floor in the final period while the Hawkeyes answered by going 8-for-13 in the fourth quarter, which improved to 22-5 overall and 13-4 in the conference.
For the game, Nebraska hit just 34.8 percent (24-69) of its shots from the field, including 8-of-24 threes. NU went just 2-for-6 at the free throw line, and was out-rebounded 44-31 by the Hawkeyes, including 23-8 in the second half. The Huskers won the turnover battle 16-9, including 9-2 in the second half.
Nebraska built a 16-12 lead at the end of the first quarter by closing the period on a 14-5 surge over the last six minutes. Iowa closed the second quarter strong and took a 36-25 lead to halftime.
Haiby led the Huskers with nine points off the bench in the first half, while Veerbeek contributed eight points and four boards off the bench in the half. Fellow freshman Kayla Mershon pitched in five rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block to help the Huskers.
Nebraska surged out of halftime thanks to a pair of three-pointers from Hannah Whitish, a three-point play from Haiby and a pair of buckets from Cain. The Huskers tied the score at 43 on a layup by senior Maddie Simon with 2:33. From that point, Iowa outscored the Huskers 31-15 over the final 12:33.
Nebraska closes regular-season Big Ten play on Saturday, March 2, when the Huskers travel to Penn State. Tip-off between the Big Red and the Nittany Lions is set for 2 p.m., with live television coverage by BTN.