#22/#22 Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Omaha Mavericks
Monday, November 7, 2022, Noon (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena - Lincoln, Nebraska
Live Video: B1G+
Live Radio: Huskers Radio Network (11:45 a.m.) Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst) Lincoln (107.3 FM), Omaha (ESPN 590 AM) Huskers.com, Huskers App
The Huskers were set to return five starters from their 2022 NCAA Tournament team that finished 24-9 overall and 11-7 in the Big Ten, but graduate guard Sam Haiby suffered a knee injury in a September workout. Haiby’s injury was originally feared to be season-ending, but when she went in for surgery Oct. 27, it was determined that the damage was far less significant than originally expected and she could return to the court this season. No timeline for her return has been set.
Haiby, a 5-9 guard from Moorhead, Minn., is the only player in Husker history to achieve the combined career milestones of 1,000 points (1,381), 500 rebounds (532) and 400 assists (414).
The temporary absence of Haiby could lead to a faster path to maturity for sophomore Allison Weidner. The 5-10 guard from Humphrey, Neb., started nine games last season, including NU’s final eight contests. In her nine starts, she averaged 9.3 points, 4.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game.
Newcomer Maddie Krull could play a significant role. The 5-9 guard from Omaha spent two seasons starting all 60 games for a pair of NCAA Tournament teams at South Dakota. In 2021-22, the Millard South grad helped USD to the NCAA Sweet Sixteen after winning Summit League regular-season and tournament titles. She was a member of the 2021 Summit League All-Newcomer Team.
Nebraska is also excited for the return of fourth-year guard Trinity Brady. The 5-11 junior started the first two games of 2020-21 before suffering an ankle injury that kept her out for the rest of the season. She missed all of 2021-22 with injuries.
The Huskers also return experienced contributors Annika Stewart, Kendall Coley and Kendall Moriarty, while welcoming Nailah Dillard to the court. Dillard has missed two seasons with injuries.
#22/#22 Nebraska Cornhuskers (24-9, 11-7 Big Ten)
34 - Isabelle Bourne - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 11.1 ppg, 4.5 rpg
40 - Alexis Markowski - 6-3 - So. - C/F - 12.8 ppg, 8.0 rpg
1 - Jaz Shelley - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 13.1 ppg, 6.3 rpg
2 - Trinity Brady - 5-11 - So. - G - Injured
3 - Allison Weidner - 5-10 - So. - G - 7.2 ppg, 3.7 rpg
Off the Bench
4 - Sam Haiby - 5-9 - Gr. - G - 11.0 ppg, 4.5 rpg
42 - Maddie Krull (USD) - 5-9 - So. - G - 6.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg
21 - Annika Stewart - 6-3 - Fr. - F - 5.1 ppg, 2.1 rpg
32 - Kendall Coley - 6-2 - Fr. - F/G - 2.4 ppg, 1.7 rpg
15 - Kendall Moriarty - 6-1 - Fr. - G - 1.5 ppg, 0.4 rpg
24 - Nailah Dillard - 5-10 - Gr. - G - Injured
14 - Callin Hake - 5-9 - Fr. - G - HS
44 - Maggie Mendelson - 6-5 - Fr. - F/C - HS
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)Six Seasons at Nebraska (96-84); 15 Seasons Overall (289-193)
Omaha Mavericks (7-19, 3-14 Summit League)
5 - Elena Pilakouta - 6-3 - Gr. - C - 9.8 ppg, 4.6 rpg
1 - Deanay Watson (SEMO) - 5-10 - Gr. - G - 10.9 ppg, 5.6 rpg
2 - Sam Mitchell - 5-6 - Sr. - G - 5.9 ppg, 0.9 rpg
14 - Katie Keitges - 5-8 - Jr. - G - 4.5 ppg, 1.9 rpg
20 - Grace Cave - 5-7 - So. - G - 7.4 ppg, 2.8 rpg
Off the Bench
21 - Kennedi Grant - 5-7 - So. - G - 4.2 ppg, 2.2 rpg
00 - Aaliyah Stanley (FGCU) - 5-6 - Sr. - G - 3.1 ppg, 0.9 rpg
24 - Morgann Gardner - 6-2 - So. - F - 1.5 ppg, 1.4 rpg
3 - Akili Felici - 5-10 - RJr. - G - DNP
10 - Jaylen Townsend - 5-8 - Jr. - G - JUCO
4 - Polina Nikulochkina - 5-7 - Jr. - G - JUCO
23 - Ana Nikulochkina - 5-6 - Jr. - G - JUCO
11 - Eviyon Richardson - 5-10 - Fr. - F - HS
54 - Brooklyn Smith - 6-2 - Fr. - C - HS
Head Coach: Carrie Banks (Detroit Mercy, 2000)Third Season at Omaha (14-32); Third Season Overall (14-32)
Scouting the Omaha MavericksThird-year head coach Carrie Banks brings Omaha to Lincoln to battle the Huskers. Banks is very familiar with the Big Ten Conference. She spent four seasons as an assistant coach at Ohio State under Kevin McGuff (2016-2020) after spending three seasons (2013-16) at Northwestern under Head Coach Joe McKeown.
Omaha must replace the loss of its leading scorer and rebounder from a year ago, Mariah Murdie. The 6-3 forward averaged 10.7 points and 6.7 rebounds while playing a team-high 690 minutes over 26 games (25 starts) last season, but chose to shift her attention to volleyball for the Mavs this year.
The Mavs also lost 6-0 forward Josie Filer (6.7 ppg, 6.1 rpg; transfer to UIC), 5-6 guard Natalie Bartle (6.4 ppg, 3.0 rpg; transfer to Finlandia) and 5-5 guard Alexis Pratt (6.3 ppg, 2.9 rpg; transfer to University of St. Thomas), who ranked second on the team with 686 minutes played while leading the team with 2.3 assists per game. Part-time starter and 5-10 guard Sophie Johnston (3.5 ppg, 1.3 rpg) and 5-8 guard Lauren Frost (3.2 ppg, 1.7 rpg; transfer to Central Missouri) are also gone.
Omaha returns four starters from last year’s squad that finished 7-19 overall and 3-14 in the Summit League. Graduate center Elena Pilakouta (Nicosia, Cyprus) is Omaha’s top returning player, averaging 9.8 points and 4.6 rebounds per game.
Sophomore guard Grace Cave (Weeping Water) returns the most production in the backcourt after averaging 7.4 points and 2.8 rebounds as a freshman. Cave led UNO with 23 three-pointers (.319) on the season while ranking second on the squad in assists (1.9 apg) and steals (1.3 spg).
Junior Katie Keitges started 20 games for the Mavs last season, the most by a returning player to this year’s team. Keitges, a 5-8 guard from Knoxville, Iowa, averaged 4.5 points, 1.9 rebounds, while ranking second on the team with 20 made threes (.323) on the season.
Senior Sam Mitchell rounds out Omaha’s returning starters after averaging 5.9 points over 17 games with 11 starts. Mitchell knocked down 19 threes (.284) last season. The 5-6 guard from Downers Grove, Ill., spent her first two seasons at UAB before transferring to Omaha prior to last season.