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Nebraska Women’s Basketball Preview: Rutgers

Nebraska and Rutgers get ready to rumble in Lincoln

Nebraska v Iowa Photo by Matthew Holst/Getty Images

Another Saturday, another Nebraska Women’s basketball game. The Huskers improved to 14-7 (6-4 Big Ten) on Wednesday against the Boilermakers. It was a game that had a lot of good, also a lot of things that could be improved, but a win is a win.

Saturday afternoon, Rutgers makes the trip to Lincoln carrying a 12 game losing streak that they’re desperate to break. Can Nebraska hold the Scarlet Knights from doing just that and getting their first win in conference play?

Nebraska Cornhuskers (14-7, 6-4 Big Ten) vs Rutgers Scarlet Knights (6-17, 0-10 Big Ten)

Saturday, February 3, 2024, 2 pm (CT)

Pinnacle Bank Arena - Lincoln, Nebraska

Tickets: Huskers.com

Television: Nebraska Public Media

Live Video Stream: B1G+

Live Radio: Huskers Radio Network (1:30 p.m.)

Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)

B107.3 FM (Lincoln), 590 AM (Omaha), Huskers.com, Huskers App

Live Stats: Huskers.com

Nebraska Cornhuskers (14-7, 6-4 Big Ten - NCAA NET 27)

22 - Natalie Potts - 6’2 - Fr. - F/G - 10.6 ppg, 5.6 rpg

40 - Alexis Markowski - 6’3 - Jr. - C/F - 16.6 ppg, 10.4 rpg

0 - Darian White - 5’6 - Gr. - G - 8.7 ppg, 4.5 rpg

1 - Jaz Shelley - 5’9 - Gr. - G - 12.3 ppg, 4.4 rpg

14 - Callin Hake - 5’9 - So. - G - 6.9 ppg, 2.8 rpg

Off the Bench

2 - Logan Nissley - 6’0 - Fr. - G - 5.6 ppg, 1.9 rpg

12 - Jessica Petrie - 6’2 - Fr. - F - 4.0 ppg, 2.2 rpg

21 - Annika Stewart - 6’3 - Sr. - F - 3.1 ppg, 1.5 rpg

15 - Kendall Moriarty - 6’1 - Jr. - G - 3.0 ppg, 1.1 rpg

32 - Kendall Coley - 6’2 - Jr. - F - 2.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg

42 - Maddie Krull - 5’9 - Gr. - G - 2.4 ppg, 2.0 rpg

Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)

Eighth Season at Nebraska (128-106); 17th Season Overall (321-215)

Rutgers Scarlet Knights (6-17, 0-10 Big Ten - NCAA NET 161)

1 - Destiny Adams - 6’3 - Jr. - G/F - 14.9 ppg, 7.3 rpg

4 - Antonia Bates - 6’3 - So. - G/F - 3.2 ppg, 3.4 rpg

54 - Chyna Cornwell - 6’3 - Sr. - F - 8.0 ppg, 7.9 rpg

20 - Erica Lafayette - 6’0 - Sr. - G - 1.5 ppg, 0.7 rpg

24 - Lisa Thompson - 5’9 - Fr. - G - 7.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg

Off the Bench

3 - Mya Petticord - 5’9 - So. - G - 10.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg

22 - Kassondra Brown - 6’2 - Gr. - C - 8.2 ppg, 5.6 rpg

0 - Jillian Huerter - 6’0 - Fr. - G - 7.0 ppg, 1.7 rpg

33 - Kennedy Brandt - 5’10 - Fr. - G - 0.5 ppg, 0.3 rpg

2 - Kaylene Smikle - 6’0 - So. - G - 16.1 ppg, 5.1 rpg

11 - Awa Sidibe - 5’11 - Gr. - G - OUT

Head Coach: Coquese Washington (Notre Dame, 1992)

Second Season at Rutgers (18-37); 14th Season Overall (227-206)

Scouting the Scarlet Knights

Rutgers swings into Lincoln carrying a 12 game losing streak and are 0-10 in Big Ten play. The losing streak started with Indiana and includes losses to Iowa and Ohio State. Some losses have been by single digits, Purdue (77-76), at Northwestern (77-70) and at home to Michigan (56-50), all other losses have been by double figures.

Kaylene Smikle, who was Rutgers’ leading scorer through 15 games at 16.1 points and 5.1 rebounds, has missed the past eight games. Last year, she averaged 17.9 points and 5.4 rebounds per game, she also managed to hit 53 three pointers.

Mya Petticord, averages 10.4 points and 3.7 rebounds through 13 games, but did not play in the loss to Michigan State (82-64). Petticord, who has scored in double figures in seven of her eight Big Ten games while playing at least 33 minutes in every conference contest, was on the sideline in a walking boot.

Seniors Chyna Cornwell (8.0 ppg, 7.9 rpg) and Erica Lafayette (1.5 ppg, 0.7 rpg) are the only players who have spent at least three seasons at Rutgers, along with the injured Sidibe. Cornwell has started 53 games in her four-year Rutgers career, including 21 this season. Last year, she had eight points and a game-high 12 rebounds in the win against Nebraska.

North Carolina transfer Destiny Adams, averages 14.9 points and 7.3 rebounds per game. The 6’3 junior is shooting 51.6 percent from the field and 70.5 percent from the free throw line, adding on 35 steals.

Rutgers is only averaging 65 points per game, while allowing 81.4 points to opponents. The Scarlet Knights are shooting 42.1 percent from the field, but just 30.7 percent from three point range with an average of just 4.2 made threes per game.

Husker Report

Nebraska is averaging 74.2 points per game and is allowing just 62.8 points to opponents. The Huskers shoot 42.9 percent from the field, including 32.6 percent from long range, while also bringing down 42.5 rebounds per game giving them a +10 margin for that category.

Alexis Markowski is 21 points (1,162) from catching Nebraska’s first career 1,000-point scorer, Jan Crouch, at No. 22 (1,183 points) on the Husker career scoring list.

Jaz Shelley (475) needs two assists to catch Sam Haiby in sixth (477, 2019-23) on Nebraska’s career assist chart.

Jaz Shelley (196) needs four steals to reach 200 in her college career (Nebraska-151; Oregon-45).

Annika Stewart is expected to play in her 100th game as a Husker against Rutgers on Saturday.