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Nebraska WBB Wins vs Minnesota 70-67

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The Huskers win a conference game on the road behind a vintage Sam Haiby performance

Scott Bruhn

The Husker women are receiving votes in the polls. If they continue to win games, they should be in the top 25 soon.

Minnesota will be without Jasmine Powell, their point guard and second leading scorer.

First Quarter

The Gophers found pay dirt first, but Nebraska answered with an Issie Bourne basket (assist by Shelley). Nebraska took their first lead on a Bella Cravens layup (Scoggin assist) and the lead was extended (6-2) behind a nifty Bourne move to the basket. Add a Shelley three and the Huskers have a 11-4 lead at the six minute mark. Unfortunately Boune picked up her second foul and was replaced by Alexis Markowski.

The Gophers closed within three (11-8) before Scoggin and Shelley added five points (16-8 Huskers). Six of Nebraska’s first seven baskets have been assisted.

Markowski is having a hard time scoring a basket and missed two free throws early. Allison Weidner is in the game and the hustle factor just went up by a significant amount - she found Markowski for a reverse layup. The Gophers finally broke the Husker 8-0 run with a basket at the 2:10 mark (19-10 Nebraska). MiCole Cayton free throws were matched by a Gopher basket (21-12 Huskers). Both teams hit quick baskets and the quarter ended with a Cayton layup.

Shelley has six points, Haiby four assists and Cravens three rebounds. Eleven players have already seen the floor for Nebraska.

Nebraska 25 Minnesota 14

Second Quarter

The Huskers forced Minnesota into a shot clock violation to start the second quarter. Scoggin found Cravens for a layup but then the Gophers nabbed a long three (27-17 Nebraska). Some back and forth scoring favored Minnesota as they closed within eight (29-21) at the seven minute mark. Bella Cravens dove after a loose ball and fell off the raised floor. She seems to be okay but went to the bench anyway.

The scoring went cold for a couple minutes. Jaz Shelley took a foul that pushed her into the post - that looked like it hurt. She’s okay. There was a review of an off-ball foul in which Lindsay Whalen thought Kendall Coley should have been whistled. The officials disagreed and Minnesota was charged with a timeout.

The Huskers missed a couple of paint buckets and that led to a Minnesota three to get the Gophers within five (29-24). Shelley answered with a layup (31-24) and a Cravens jumper made it nine (33-24). That is where the score stayed for a minute or so until Minnesota went on a seven point run (33-31 Huskers).

The Gopher defense is causing fits for Nebraska right now as they only allowed the Huskers to score eight points in the second quarter.

Nebraska 33 Gophers 31

Third Quarter

Issie Bourne opened the scoring followed by two Bella Cravens fast breaks!! (39-31 Nebraska). Minnesota burned a timeout. A made free throw by Minnesota interrupted the Husker run, but Scoggin hit a three to extend the lead back to 10. Minnesota cut into that lead, but Nebraska answered with Cravens and Shelley (46-36 Nebraska at 5:16). Bella is the first Husker in double digits with 12 points.

Cravens picked up her second and third fouls in short order, and the Gophers capitalized with four points. A Bourne layup gave Nebraska the 48-40 lead. Allison Weidner grabbed a layup, which was answered by the Gophers (50-43 Huskers). Minnesota wasn’t done yet as they closed within three (50-47 Nebraska). Free throws for Minnesota ended the quarter.

Nebraska 50 Minnesota 49

Fourth Quarter

Haiby shorted a fast break layup - which isn’t like her. Neither team scored for the first two minutes. A defensive slog suits the Gophers just fine. With the offensive firepower Nebraska has shown this season, they want a low scoring game. Sam Haiby broke the stalemate with a three but the Gophers answered with one of their own (53-52 Neb). Haiby started to come alive as she drove and drew the foul to put Nebraska up three again - and the pesky Gophers won’t go away as they answered (55-54 Neb). Shelley free throws opened it back up to 57-54.

Issie Bourne took a charge but the Huskers came up empty as Shelley is officially cold from long range (she is 3-8 for the game). The Gophers tied the game at 57 at 5:21 and then took the lead (59-57) at 4:57. Bella Cravens picked up her fourth foul and Minnesota extended their lead to four (61-57 Minn). Bella Cravens (assist by Bourne) closed the lead within two (the first basket for Nebraska in almost four minutes). Sam Haiby started to do what she does best and drove to the basket. She was rewarded with free throws to tie the game at 61 with 3:11 left.

The Gophers hit a layup but Nebraska is in the bonus and will shoot free throws the rest of the way. Cravens hit one (63-62 Minn). It’s Haiby time as Sammy hits a layup to give Nebraska the lead. She drew an offensive foul and then got to the rim to give Nebraska a 66-63 lead with 1:13 left.

Both teams traded baskets (Yes, it was Haiby again for Nebraska) and the lead was 68-65 with 19 seconds left. Scoggin grabbed a rebound and was fouled with 11 seconds left. She hit both (70-65 Nebraska). The Huskers allowed a garbage layup at the buzzer.

Final. Nebraska 70 Minnesota 67

Nebraska is 9-0. Minnesota is (probably) not a great team, but conference games are always tough and the Huskers haven’t found ways to win in Minneapolis for three or so years (maybe more). The Gopher defense was excellent and they came up with clutch scores when they needed it.

Sam Haiby has had a quiet season (relatively speaking) so far, but Nebraska hasn’t needed her to go into Haiby mode. She did tonight and carried the team to its first conference win of 2021-22.

Four Huskers scored in double figures: Shelley and Cravens with 15 each, Haiby with 13 and Bourne with 10.

Cravens pulled down seven rebounds and Haiby six.

The Huskers blocked seven shots: Shelley (3), Haiby (2), and Cravens and Bourne with one each.

Haiby had six assists and Shelley five.

The Huskers shot 41% from the field and only 4-19 (21% from the three point line). Minnesota outrebounded the Huskers 38-32. Nebraska had 18 assists (12 for Minnesota) and only 12 turnovers (they forced 18 on Minnesota). Nebraska outscored the Gophers 42-26 in the paint and, very importantly, scored 21 points off turnovers compared to 14 for the Gophers.