Huskers to Battle Badgers in Pink Game
Nebraska Cornhuskers vs. Wisconsin Badgers
Sunday, Feb. 11, 2 p.m. (CT)
Pinnacle Bank Arena (Lincoln, Nebraska)
Promotion: Play4Kay (Pink-Out for Cancer Awareness)
Live Video: BTN Plus
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network
Matt Coatney (PBP), Jeff Griesch (Analyst)
Lincoln - B107.3 FM; Omaha - ESPN 590 AM
Free Live Audio: Huskers.com/Huskers & TuneIn Apps
Huskers Battle Badgers in Pink Game at Pinnacle
• The Nebraska women’s basketball team wraps up its three-game home stand by taking on Wisconsin Sunday afternoon at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Tip-off between the Huskers (17-7, 8-3 Big Ten) and Badgers (9-16, 2-10 Big Ten) is set for 2 p.m., with a “Pink Out” planned to promote cancer awareness on Play4Kay Day in Lincoln.
• A live radio broadcast will be produced by the Husker Sports Network, with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch teaming up for their 17th season together on the call. The game will be carried for free on Huskers.com and over the air on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and ESPN 590 AM in Omaha. Free audio also can be found on the Huskers App and the TuneIn App.
• A live video stream will be provided to BTN Plus subscribers as a BTN Student U production.
• The Huskers will try to get back on the winning track after having their five-game winning streak snapped with a 64-57 loss to No. 11 Maryland (Feb. 4). The setback dropped Nebraska to 8-3 in the Big Ten with all three losses to current top-25 teams (No. 10 Maryland, No. 13 Ohio State, No. 21 Michigan) at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
• Five of Nebraska’s eight Big Ten wins have come against NCAA RPI Top 55 teams (through games Feb. 5), including at Rutgers (14), Iowa (23, twice), Purdue (35), and at Minnesota (52). NU’s only conference losses have come to RPI No. 5 Ohio State, No. 18 Maryland and RPI No. 34 Michigan in overtime.
• Nebraska’s other losses were setbacks to No. 22 Buffalo, No. 39 Creighton, No. 83 Washington State and No. 149 Clemson. The Huskers played without starter Maddie Simon in the losses to Buffalo, Creighton and Clemson, while their leading scorer in non-conference play, Taylor Kissinger (14.0 ppg), missed the game with Washington State because of injury.
• Nebraska is one of only five NCAA Division I teams that is unbeaten in true road games this year joining Mercer (11-0), UConn (10-0), Louisville (10-0) and Mississippi State (6-0).
• Nebraska is one of only three teams nationally (through games Feb. 5) that owns a plus-10 or better improvement in the win column over 2016-17. The team that has shown the most improvement is Rutgers. The Scarlet Knights are plus-12 in the win column at 18-7 (6-24, 2016-17). UC Irvine is the only other team with a double-digit improvement in the win column at 15-8 (5-26, 2016-17).
Nebraska Cornhuskers (17-7, 8-3 Big Ten)
24 - Maddie Simon - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 10.7 ppg, 5.9 rpg
31 - Kate Cain - 6-5 - Fr. - C - 10.3 ppg, 6.6 rpg
3 - Hannah Whitish - 5-9 - So. - G - 13.1 ppg, 3.8 rpg
5 - Nicea Eliely - 6-1 - So. - G - 8.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg
34 - Jasmine Cincore - 5-10 - Sr. - F - 6.9 ppg, 3.8 rpg
Off the Bench
33 - Taylor Kissinger - 6-1 - Fr. - G - 10.7 ppg, 4.1 rpg
12 - Emily Wood - 5-5 - Sr. - G - 4.4 ppg, 1.8 rpg
13 - Janay Morton - 5-10 - Sr. - G - 3.6 ppg, 1.1 rpg
15 - Bria Stallworth - 5-6 - So. - G - 3.7 ppg, 1.6 rpg
14 - Grace Mitchell - 6-2 - So. - F - 2.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg
50 - Darrien Washington - 6-2 - Jr. - F - 1.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg
43 - Rachel Blackburn - 6-3 - So. - F - 1.3 ppg, 2.1 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Second Season at Nebraska (24-29)
11th Season Overall (217-138)
Wisconsin Badgers (9-16, 2-10 Big Ten)
11 - Marsha Howard - 5-10 - Jr. - F - 11.4 ppg, 7.1 rpg
33 - Courtney Fredrickson - 6-2 - So. - F - 9.3 ppg, 5.8 rpg
23 - Cayla McMorris - 6-0 - Sr. - G - 13.7 ppg, 6.4 rpg
22 - Niya Beverley - 5-7 - Fr. - G - 4.3 ppg, 3.2 rpg
10 - Kendra Van Leeuwen - 5-10 - So. - G - 4.0 ppg, 3.8 rpg
Off the Bench
3 - Suzanne Gilreath - 5-4 - So. - G - 9.5 ppg, 1.4 rpg
14 - Abby Laszewski - 6-3 - So. - F - 6.3 ppg, 3.1 rpg
35 - Kendall Shaw - 6-4 - RSr. - F/C - 4.0 ppg, 2.8 rpg
5 - Roichelle Marble - 5-7 - Jr. - G - 1.2 ppg, 1.0 rpg
30 - Kara Crowley - 5-10 - Fr. - G - 0.7 ppg, 0.8 rpg
15 - Lexy Richardson - 5-9 - Jr. - G - 0.6 ppg, 0.3 rpg
20 - Lizzie Miller - 5-7 - Fr. - G - 0.0 ppg, 0.1 rpg
Head Coach: Jonathan Tsipsis (North Carolina, 1996)
Second Season at Wisconsin (18-38)
Sixth Season Overall (111-76)
Scouting the Wisconsin Badgers
• Coach Jonathan Tsipsis brings his second Wisconsin team to Lincoln for its only regular-season meeting with the Huskers this season.
• The Badgers, who return four starters off last year’s team, finished with a 9-22 record last season that included a 3-13 Big Ten mark to tie the Huskers for 11th in the final conference standings.
• Wisconsin is looking to show improvement this year, managing a 9-16 overall record that includes a 2-10 Big Ten mark. The Badgers start their final quarter of conference play with Nebraska in Lincoln, before facing Rutgers at home and Iowa and Michigan State on the road.
• Like Nebraska, the Badgers have had a full week off to prepare for Sunday’s game after battling Ohio State in a 68-55 loss at the Kohl Center in Madison on Feb. 3.
• Last season, the Badgers rolled to an 82-56 win over the Huskers in Madison on Feb. 9, snapping Nebraska’s eight-game winning streak in the series while also handing Nebraska a loss of more than 10 points for the first time in the 14-game history of the series. Wisconsin returns 57 of its 82 points to this year’s lineup, while the Huskers return just 42 of their 56.
• Senior guard Cayla McMorris leads Wisconsin with 13.7 points per game this season, while ranking second on the squad with 6.4 rebounds. McMorris, who had 13 points, six rebounds and four assists last season against NU, is one of four returning Badgers who produced double figures against the Huskers.
• Junior forward Marsha Howard, who ranks second among the Badgers with 11.4 points per game while leading the team with 7.1 rebounds per contest, added 10 points and six boards in just 18 minutes against the Huskers a year ago.
• Sophomore Courtney Fredrickson, a 6-2 forward who has added 9.3 points and 5.8 rebounds this season, led Wisconsin with 15 points and 10 rebounds last year at the Kohl Center.
• Fellow sophomore Suzanne Gilreath provides production with long-range shooting off the bench, averaging 9.5 points per game. Gilreath has hit exactly half (61) of UW’s threes (122) this season. While she has hit 61-of-172 (.355), the rest of the Badgers are 61-of-239 (.255) and no other Badger has hit 33 percent of their attempts. Last year, Gilreath came off the bench for 12 points on four three-pointers in just 17 minutes against the Huskers.
• Another sophomore, Kendra Van Leeuwen, started last season’s game against the Big Red and dished out five assists while grabbing two steals. She did not score, but she did not attempt a shot. Van Leeuwen is averaging 4.0 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists and a team-best 1.6 steals per game this season.
• A fourth sophomore, 6-3 forward Abby Laszewski, has contributed 6.3 points and 3.1 rebounds per game. Laszewski has made 17 starts this season, but just four in Big Ten play. Her production has slipped to 4.2 points and 2.4 rebounds in 16.5 minutes per game in conference action after averaging 8.2 points and 3.7 boards in 20.8 minutes while starting all 13 of UW’s non-conference games. Laszewski was shooting 60.5 percent (46-76) in non-conference play but just 43.9 percent (18-41) in the league.
• Freshman Niya Beverley has made an impact as a starting guard, averaging 4.3 points, 3.2 rebounds and a team-best 3.5 assists.
• Fifth-year senior Kendall Shaw, a 6-4 post player, has managed 4.0 points and 2.8 rebounds. She scored two points off the bench against the Huskers last year. Roichelle Marble, a fourth-year junior, has pitched in 1.2 points per game after scoring five points against NU a year ago.
• In Big Ten play, the Badgers have struggled to average just 55.7 points while surrendering 67.2 points per contest. They are shooting just 37.9 percent from the field, including 28.3 percent from three-point range. UW has a minus-6.0 rebound margin and a minus-2.9 turnover margin against the league.
Nebraska vs. Wisconsin Series History
• Nebraska leads the all-time series with Wisconsin, 8-6, including an 8-1 edge as Big Ten foes. Wisconsin’s lone win as conference opponents came with an 82-56 win over the Huskers last season.
• Prior to last season’s loss at the Kohl Center, the Huskers had won eight straight games in the series, including four in Lincoln and four in Madison.
• Wisconsin won the first five meetings in series history as non-conference foes, dating back to a 79-74 win over Nebraska in Madison on Jan. 5, 1979. Ten years later, Wisconsin defeated the Huskers, 77-67, in Madison on Dec. 12, 1989.
• The next two meetings with the Badgers went to overtime at the Devaney Center, an 80-74 Husker loss on Dec. 7, 1990, and a 92-85 setback on Nov. 21, 1999.
• In the first-ever meeting at the Kohl Center, Wisconsin prevailed 74-64 on Nov. 29, 2000.
• As Big Ten foes, Nebraska notched five straight single-digit wins, including a 71-70 OT win in Madison on Feb. 5, 2014, before notching a 17-point win in Madison on Jan. 22, 2015.
• A win for Nebraska over Wisconsin would be the Huskers’ 18th victory of the season, which would be a plus-11-win improvement from last season (7).
• At 8-0 in true road games, Nebraska is one of only five women’s teams in NCAA Division I (349 teams) unbeaten in true road contests, joining UConn, Mississippi State, Louisville and Mercer. The only men’s teams unbeaten on the road are Purdue (7-0) and Saint Mary’s [Calif.] (8-0).
• Kate Cain owns the Nebraska record for blocks in a season with 79, surpassing previous mark held by Olympic bronze medalist Danielle Page (78, 2007-08). Cain has at least one blocked shot in all 24 games this season.
• Cain’s 79 blocks rank No. 4 in the nation while her 3.3 blocks per game rank seventh in the country through games Feb. 5. No Nebraska individual has ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a career, and only two Huskers (Danielle Page, 2.4 bpg, 2007-08; Catheryn Redmon, 2.5 bpg, 2010-11) have ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a single season.
• Nebraska freshman Taylor Kissinger has come off the bench in the first 11 Big Ten games. The 6-1 guard from Minden, Neb., is averaging 10.7 points per game on the year. Kissinger averaged a team-best 14.0 points per game over the first seven games this season as a starter before missing Nebraska’s final six non-conference contests with a knee injury.
• Kissinger (10.7 ppg) and Cain (10.3 ppg) have a chance to become just the second freshman duo and the first since 1982-83 to each average double figures in the same season, joining Debra Powell (15.4 ppg) and Crystal Coleman (12.3 ppg).
• Junior Maddie Simon (+6.6 ppg) is one of the Big Ten’s most improved players in 2017-18. Simon, a 6-2 forward, is averaging 10.7 points per game after averaging 4.1 points through all 29 games a year ago. Simon has scored in double figures in 10 of the last 15 games. She had just five double-digit efforts in her first two seasons combined.
Big Red Locking Down on Defense in Big Ten
• Nebraska is showing drastic improvement on defense in 2017-18. Last season, Nebraska ranked 14th in the Big Ten by allowing 76.3 points, including 80.4 points per game in league play. Prior to 2015-16, the Huskers had not allowed 65 points per game since 2004-05.
• This season, Nebraska is allowing 63.1 points per game, including 62.7 in Big Ten play.
• Over the last six games, the Huskers are allowing just 57.2 points per game.
• Nebraska leads the Big Ten in field goal percentage defense (.366) and three-point field goal percentage defense (.298). Big Ten opponents are shooting just .297 from three-point range against the Huskers.
• Last season, Nebraska allowed 82.8 points per game to go 0-13 away from home. This year, Nebraska is allowing just 63.8 points per game while going 9-1 away from Pinnacle Bank Arena.
• Compared to last season, Nebraska is 7.4 points per game better offensively (70.2-62.8 ppg) and 13.2 points per game better defensively (63.1-76.3 ppg).
• Nebraska allowed just 42 points at No. 25 Rutgers, the lowest point total by an opponent in Coach Amy Williams’ two seasons at NU and the fewest points surrendered by the Huskers since holding Creighton to 38 on Dec. 14, 2013. It was also the fewest points allowed by the Huskers in a road game since holding Michigan to 39 points on Feb. 21, 2013, in Ann Arbor.
• Nebraska has held eight foes to 55 points or less, including 42 at No. 25 Rutgers, 47 to Illinois (Feb. 1) and Coastal Carolina (Nov. 24), 49 at Kansas (Dec. 6), 51 to Purdue (Jan. 24), 52 to Arkansas Pine Bluff (Dec. 2), 53 to SIUE (Nov. 11) and 55 at San Jose State (Dec. 17).
• Last season, the Huskers held just two foes to 55 or less.
• The Huskers have held two opponents (Illinois, 2nd, 0-12, Feb. 1; at Kansas, 4th, 0-14, Dec. 6) without a field goal in a quarter this season. They are the only two times Nebraska has held an opponent without a field goal since the advent of the quarter system.
• Nebraska held Illinois (Feb. 1) to just 10 points in the first half - the lowest total by an opponent in a first half in school history. Illinois managed just one point in the second quarter.
• Nebraska held Kansas (Dec. 6) to just 13 points in the second half, the fewest points ever scored in a half by a Husker road opponent on their homecourt.
• The Huskers limited a potent Michigan offense to just 14 second-half points (4 field goals), including five points in the third quarter, to take the No. 23 Wolverines to overtime (Jan. 13).
• Since accomplishing it the first time in the first quarter (8 points) against Coastal Carolina (Nov. 24), Nebraska has held opponents to single digits in a quarter a total of 13 times, including seven times in 10 Big Ten Conference games. The Huskers held Michigan (3rd, 4th), Rutgers (1st, 4th) and Illinois (1st, 2nd) to single digits twice in the same game.
• The Huskers have held each of the Big Ten’s top five scoring offenses to double digits less (in regulation) than their current season scoring averages, including Ohio State (86.0 ppg - 73, Lincoln, Dec. 28), Minnesota (84.5 ppg - 74, Minneapolis, Dec. 31), Maryland (84.3 ppg - 64, Lincoln, Feb. 4), Iowa (79.8 ppg, 65, Lincoln, Jan. 13) and Michigan (76.2 ppg - 62, Lincoln, Jan. 13).
• In a season sweep of Iowa, the Huskers held the high-scoring Hawkeyes to just 1-for-19 from three-point range combined. In the first first meeting, Iowa went 0-for-7 with multiple air balls and had two attempts blocked by Huskers.
• Sophomore guard Hannah Whitish (41) owns the longest current streak of consecutive starts by a Husker. Nebraska’s second-longest streak is 23 games by freshman Kate Cain.
• Whitish is the only Husker to start all 24 games this season.
• Nebraska has featured the same starting lineup in 16 consecutive games (12-4 record).
• Whitish has posted at least one assist in 26 consecutive games, and has three or more assists in 22 games this season.
• Whitish has knocked down a three-pointer in 21 consecutive games.
• Kate Cain has blocked at least one shot in each of the first 24 games of her career. She has 20 games with two or more blocks.
• Cain has at least two rebounds every game this season. • Maddie Simon has at least three rebounds in all 20 of her games this season.
• Taylor Kissinger has dished out an assist in 10 consecutive games off the bench.
• The Huskers have won nine consecutive games away from Pinnacle Bank Arena, including seven straight true road games and five consecutive Big Ten road games.
• The Huskers have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 304 straight regular-season games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008.
• Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 183 consecutive games.