Last season, Creighton handed the Nebraska women’s basketball team its first loss of the 2019-2020 season. Unfortunately, the same happened once again in the most recent matchup between the two.
Despite a strong win against Illinois, and knowing the threat Creighton posed from the 3-point line, Nebraska was unable to shut down the Bluejays from beyond the arc. That along with a second quarter slump, led to the Huskers suffering a 78-62 defeat, their first loss of the season.
The Bluejays made 13 of their 38 3-point shots which helped them dominate the majority of the game. Nebraska was unable to gain much ground on Creighton throughout the majority of Monday night’s contest, leading for the entire game and building a lead as high as 25 points in the third quarter.
“They're really good at getting those shots off,” head coach Amy Williams said postgame. “Transitions, screens and they’ll take the shot if you have your hand down. We didn’t do a good job of handling that.”
Junior guard Sam Haiby led the Huskers in scoring as she had 18 points, going 5-of-12 from the field and 8-of-10 from the free throw line. Haiby also co-led the team in rebounds with eight. Sophomore forward Isabelle Bourne also finished the game with eight rebounds while scoring nine points, going 4-of-8 from the field. Senior center Kate Cain had 15 points going 6-of-10 from the field.
Creighton came out of the gate shooting in the first five minutes, going on a 12-2 run. Nebraska attempted to crawl back into the game, and it was able to finish the quarter down 19-13. However this deficit only grew as Creighton outscored the Huskers in the second quarter 23-8, leaving Nebraska with a 42-21 halftime deficit.
“We gave up 10 three-point shots in the first half,” Williams said. “In transition we looked shell-shocked and we couldn’t get back and match up with Creighton and they really made us pay for it.”
To rub salt in the wound, freshman guard Ruby Porter went down in the game with a twisted ankle, the second Husker in the last week to suffer an injury. Sophomore guard Trinity Brady went down in the team’s win over Idaho State last Sunday. With the team now down four of its 11 players, Williams knows this season won’t be an easy one to conquer.
“We need to keep fighting, whatever the situation is for us,” Williams said. “We might have to go to war with the same group that finished the game tonight, but we’ll keep fighting.”
Nebraska was able to avoid another slump, scoring 22 points in the third quarter, but Creighton’s momentum didn’t stop, and the Bluejays scored 21 points to go into the fourth quarter up 63-43. The Huskers were able to cut into the lead just a bit in the fourth quarter, but were unable to cut into Creighton's massive advantage. The Bluejays' 78-62 victory marked Creighton's fifth consecutive victory over its in-state rivals.
“We looked better in the second half,” Williams said. “We were fighting and competing despite the adversity we were facing. That’s something I’m glad to see in our team, just keep fighting.”
The Huskers next game will be Sunday where they go on the road to face Big Ten opponent Indiana. Tipoff is at 3 p.m. on the Big Ten Network.