Ann Arbor, Mich. - Jessica Shepard and Allie Havers led four Huskers in double figures with 12 points apiece, but the Nebraska women's basketball team fell behind big early and could not recover in an 88-60 loss to No. 25 Michigan at Crisler Arena on Thursday night.
Shepard produced her 13th double-double of the season and 23rd of her career with 12 points, 11 rebounds and five assists, while Havers added 12 points, three rebounds and three assists for the Huskers, who slipped to 6-21 overall and 2-13 in the Big Ten. Hannah Whitish added 11 points, including a trio of three-pointers, while Maddie Simon pitched in 11 points, two rebounds, two assists, a block and a steal off the bench for the Big Red.
Junior guard Katelynn Flaherty led three Wolverines who all scored 20 or more points. Flaherty finished with 25 points and five three-pointers, while freshman guard Kysre Gondrezick pitched in 21 points and nine rebounds, while hitting a trio of three-pointers. Michigan also got 20 points, seven rebounds, four blocks and three steals from sophomore center Hallie Thome.
Michigan improved to 22-7 overall and 11-4 in the Big Ten. The 22 wins ties for the highest single-season win total in Michigan history, while the Wolverines' 11th conference win locked up the No. 3 seed in next week's Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis.
For the game, Michigan hit 49.2 percent (30-61) of its shots from the floor, including 40.7 percent (11-27) from three-point range. The Wolverines also knocked down 17-of-24 free throws (.708), while outrebounding the Huskers 36-31. Michigan also won the turnover battle, 22-13.
Nebraska hit 43.1 percent (25-58) of its shots, but just 5-of-18 threes (.278). The Huskers also hit 5-of-7 free throws.
Michigan jumped to a quick 16-6 lead that grew to 27 points at 44-17 with 3:25 left in the first half, before Nebraska ended the half on a 9-0 run. The Huskers, who trailed 28-11 at the end of the first quarter, trailed 44-26 at halftime and an explosive first half from the Wolverines.
Flaherty led Michigan with 17 first-half points on 5-of-8 three-point shooting. Gondrezick added 11 points and six rebounds in the first half after hitting 3-of-6 first-half three-pointers. Thome added nine points, four boards and two blocks for the Wolverines in the first half.
As a team, Michigan hit 15-of-33 shots, including 8-of-17 first-half threes, despite going scoreless for the final 3:25 of the half. Michigan hit 6-of-8 free throws and outrebounded Nebraska, 21-17. The Wolverines also won the first-half turnover battle 11-7.
The Huskers hit just 11-of-30 first-half shots, including just 2-of-11 threes and 2-of-3 free throws. Havers and Whitish each scored eight points to lead the Huskers in the half.
Nebraska got off to a solid start in the third quarter, trimming Michigan’s margin to 15 at 48-33 after a three-point play from Jasmine Cincore with 6:10 left, but the Wolverines responded with five straight points and closed the third quarter with a 62-41 lead.
The Huskers wrap up Big Ten regular-season play with their home finale against Michigan State on Sunday. Tip off on Senior Day for Allie Havers and Esther Ramacieri at Pinnacle Bank Arena against the Spartans is set for 1 p.m. (CT) with tickets available now at Huskers.com.