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Nebraska WBB vs Iowa Preview

Kate Cain is close to joining the 1000 point club at Nebraska

Scott Bruhn

Nebraska Cornhuskers (9-7, 7-6 Big Ten)
vs. Iowa Hawkeyes (10-6, 6-6 Big Ten)
Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021, 7 p.m. (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena - Lincoln, Nebraska
Live TV: B1G Network (Kevin Kugler, Meghan McKeown)
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (6:45 p.m.) Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst) Lincoln (B107.3 FM), Omaha (ESPN 590 AM), Huskers.com, Huskers App, TuneIn

After playing some really solid basketball in early January, the Huskers have seen some of their mojo (especially on defense) slip away. The Huskers are coming off back-to-back losses to Penn State and Rutgers. That doesn’t mean I am pessimistic about this game, I still think the Huskers are capable of playing some really good basketball, but it does make it harder to guess which team we’re going to get.

One piece of good news is that Isabelle Bourne is back in the starting lineup after missing several games with an ankle injury. Bourne has been an anchor for Nebraska on both ends of the floor. She is averaging 12.8 points and 7.3 rebounds on the season.

Kate Cain is closing in on 1,000 career points, entering the Iowa game with 975. She also leads the Big Ten with 3.3 blocks per game and ranks No. 6 in Big Ten history with a Nebraska-record 333 career blocks. She ranks No. 2 among active NCAA Division I players in career blocked shots. She is averaging 9.7 points and 6.7 rebounds per game this season for the Big Red.

Sam Haiby leads Nebraska in scoring (17.4 ppg), assists (4.2 apg) and steals (1.2 spg) while ranking second on the team in rebounding (7.4 rpg).

Nebraska’s roster has a pair of tight connections to the Iowa program. Freshman forward Annika Stewart is the younger sister of former Hawkeye Hannah Stewart. Annika is averaging 6.1 points and 3.2 rebounds with six double-figure scoring games for the Huskers. Kendall Coley, an early enrollee who joined the Nebraska program officially on Jan. 19, is the younger sister of former Hawkeye Chase Coley.

Scouting The Iowa Hawkeyes

Iowa comes to Lincoln at 10-6 overall and 6-6 in the Big Ten, right behind Nebraska in the conference standings.

The Hawkeyes have dropped three of their last four games but have continued to feature a high-powered offense. Iowa is averaging 87.4 points per game on the season and 83.3 points over the past four games despite going 1-3 in that stretch.

Iowa is shooting better than 50 percent from the field (.506), including 37.1 percent from three-point range while averaging 8.6 made threes per contest. The Hawkeyes are also hitting 78.5 percent of their free throws.

Iowa’s explosive offense features Big Ten Freshman of the Year candidate (she’s probasbly a lock to win it) Caitlin Clark, who ranks second in the Big Ten in scoring at 25.9 points per game through the first 16 games of her career. Not only is Clark a Big Ten Freshman of the Year candidate, but has gotten mention for national awards too.

Monika Czinano, a 6-3 forward/center is averaging 19.4 points and 6.1 rebounds while shooting 67.8 percent from the field. Czinano, who ranks fourth in the Big Ten in scoring, has hit just four fewer field goals than Clark on 106 fewer attempts as the highest scoring duo in the Big Ten.

Although Iowa features the No. 2 offense in the Big Ten, the Hawkeye defense ranks 13th in the league, allowing 80.8 points per game. Iowa owns a plus-3.5 team rebound margin but a minus-1.1 team turnover margin. Opponents are hitting 44.6 percent of their shots from the field, including 33 percent of their threes, and Iowa is allowing more than eight made threes per game.

Nebraska (9-7, 7-6 BIG TEN)

No. Player Ht. Yr. Pos. PPG RPG
14 Bella Cravens 6-3 Jr. F 6.3 7.9
31 Kate Cain 6-5 Gr./Sr.C 9.7 6.7
0 Ashley Scoggin 5-7 RSo. G 7.4 2.2
4 Sam Haiby 5-9 Jr. G 17.4 7.4
34 Isabelle Bourne 6-2 So. F 12.8 7.3

Off the Bench
2 Trinity Brady 5-11 So. G 8.5 5.0
21 Annika Stewart 6-3 Fr. F 6.1 3.2
11 Ruby Porter 5-10 Fr. G 4.4 2.2
10 Whitney Brown 5-8 Fr. G 4.2 1.5
5 MiCole Cayton 5-9 Gr./RJr. G 2.8 0.8
32 Kendall Coley 6-2 Fr. F/G 0.0 0.0

Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998) Fifth Season at Nebraska (68-69) 14th Season Overall (261-178)

Iowa (10-6, 6-6 BIG TEN)

No. Player Ht. Yr. Pos. PPG RPG
14 McKenna Warnock 6-1 So. G/F 12.3 9.6
25 Monika Czinano 6-3 Jr. F/C 19.4 6.1
20 Kate Martin 6-0 RSo.G 6.9 3.8
22 Caitlin Clark 6-0 Fr. G 25.9 6.1
24 Gabbie Marshall 5-9 So. G 8.4 1.8

Off the Bench
1 Tomi Taiwo 5-10 Jr. G 3.9 1.5
40 Sharon Goodman 6-3 Fr. C 3.8 2.4
11 Megan Meyer 5-8 So. G 3.5 0.9
23 Logan Cook 6-1 Jr. F 2.5 2.4
15 Lauren Jensen 5-10 Fr. G 1.8 0.5
5 Alexis Sevillian 5-5 Sr. G 1.8 0.9
21 Zion Sanders 5-8 Sr. G 0.5 0.5

Head Coach: Lisa Bluder (Northern Iowa, 1983) 21st Season at Iowa (429-229) 37th Season Overall (785-372)