Huskers Remain Perfect with Win over UNO

Posted by: Sports

Dylan Talley scored a Husker career high 22 points to lead four players in double figures, as the Huskers fought off a determined UNO squad, 75-62, at the Devaney Center Sunday afternoon, as part of the Joe Cipriano Nebraska Classic. 


Talley, who also added four rebounds and five assists while playing a career-high 38 minutes, joined with fellow senior Andre Almeida in keying Nebraska's decisive 14-4 run which allowed the Huskers seize control from the Mavericks.


The Huskers trailed 46-44 with 15:46 remaining before Almeida's offensive put-back started the run, as the senior scored on consecutive possessions to begin the surge. Almeida finished with a season-high 19 points on 9-of-11 shooting and matched his career best with seven rebounds. UNO, which was held without a field goal for 8:47, was within 50-48 after a pair of C.J. Carter free throws, but baskets by Brandon Ubel and Ray Gallegos pushed the lead to six before Talley connected on layups on back-to-back possessions to help Nebraska build its largest lead at the time at 58-48.


Almeida and Ubel combined to shoot 14-of-17 from the floor, as the Huskers enjoyed a 46-14 advantage in points in the paint against the Mavericks. Almeida's 19 points were one off his career high, connected on 9-of-11 from the floor and had five of his seven boards on the offensive end. In all, Nebraska had 16 offensive rebounds and turned them into 24 points to remain perfect at 3-0 on the season.


UNO (1-4) got to within 65-55 after a Marcus Tyus 3-pointer with 5:36 left, but Talley, who was 6-of-8 from the floor in the second half, the Mavericks' comeback hopes with a pair of baskets to make it a 68-55 game.


In addition to Almeida and Talley, Ubel and Gallegos both added 11 points apiece, as the Huskers scored a season high in points and committed only nine turnovers. The Huskers overcome poor shooting from distance, hitting only 3-of-22 from 3-point range while withstanding a UNO squad which was 8-of-13 from beyond the arc.


Justin Simmons led UNO with 19 points while Alex Welhouse added 14, including 4-of-5 from long range, in a losing effort.


UNO, which shot 57.1 percent in the first half, built an early 23-17 lead before the Huskers and Gallegos got going from long range to roar back. Nebraska had missed its first six 3-point attempts before Gallegos hit a pair of 3-pointers as part of a 12-2 run that put NU up 29-25 after his second 3-pointer of the run. The Huskers eventually took a 36-34 lead into the break and led 44-40 before UNO scored six straight points, including an offensive put-back by Koang Doluony to earn its only lead of the half.


The Huskers continue tournament action on Wednesday evening, as they host the Tulane Green Wave (3-1) at the Devaney Center. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m. and tickets are available by going to, calling 800-8-BIGRED or visiting the Nebraska Athletic Ticket Office during business hours.


Nebraska Coach Tim Miles Quotes

Opening Statement

“I credit UNO. I thought they did a really good job, and I thought were on the attack. I don't know what our mindset is, but that doesn't matter. They were the better executing team and they were the aggressor. We tell our guys all the time that the aggressor always wins, and there was no doubt that we let them get downhill on us. They were on the attack and it took us a long time to solve that problem, especially the (Justin) Simmons kid. I thought he had an outstanding game.”


On the difference between Gallegos in the first and second halves

“I think it was mentality. The guys have more information than I do. They're online and more connected. I don't know that he came ready to play and compete. I don't think he knew what this game meant to the UNO guys. I thought he solved it at halftime and figured himself out.”


On getting the ball in the paint

“You mean the offense we ran where we shoot it, miss it, get the rebound, and put it in? We drew that up in the huddle. Obviously, one of the keys to game was to dominate the paint, and I think the paint points were 46 to 14. Just naturally, we had that advantage anyway. I believe the open shot is the best shot you can get. If you start focusing on a mismatch, you quit playing. Defensively we ask, ‘What beats you, the open shot or the mismatch?” It's always the open shot. When I'm coaching offense, I'm not going to get too caught up in pounding it. Guys will quit playing. We have to realize what's there. We got it in there some, but we shot too many threes. Let's face it though, Omaha softened up their defense a little bit to give those guys the shots.”


On Talley's performance

“I thought he was pretty good at the end of the first half. He took a bunch of threes early, but then he kind of decided, ‘We're not going to lose this game, I'm going to get to the rim.' He made a couple of mistakes late in the first half, but he was still there. We don't have anybody who gets us to the rim, so at least somebody was going in there. I applauded that. I wanted him to make some better decisions: he jump passed one time and turned it over another. I think he got his finger caught in the net another time. It was kind of chaotic under there, but I thought he did a good job. Later in the game, I thought he was a stronger guy and went in there and made plays.”


On needing a guy to step up and refuse to lose

“I've been on both ends of this deal, and that really helps.”


On Almeida's performance

“I thought Andre was a dominant force. There was nobody with his size. I thought he kept his composure. He didn't frustrated or get down on himself if things didn't go well, and things went right a lot of the time. 19 and 7, I'm guessing one of those is a career high. He really did a nice job, and I only took him out because he got tired, but I thought he did a really good job.”


On what he expects from Almeida on average

“19 and 7. We'd take that. Realistically, we need somebody to step up, and it might as well be him. Why not? Seriously, why not? Because he hasn't done it in the past, right? So that's why not. But why live that self-fulfilling prophecy? Let's get him the dang ball where he deserves it and see what he can do with it.”


On the lack of turnovers

“I told them they get a quarter-point for every completed pass. I think we're going to see it both ways. We're going to see teams that pressure us a great deal, which will create some offense for us. We're also going to see the way Omaha did it tonight, which was softening up everything so the only shot that was there a lot of times was the outside shot. So we shouldn't turn it over. Some of those bad shots are just like a turnover. David Rivers has never been guarded like that before in his life. He's never been in a game situation where it went down like that, so that was a good experience for him. Benny Parker was the same way. I thought Benny, even though he struggled defensively with some fouls and didn't come out the second half ready to play and compete (I'm sure he was a little tight and sore), after we sat him down and he refocused, did a good job in the last 12 minutes of the game.


On what the first three games did for Nebraska

“Well I hope it prepared us for Tulane, Kent, Wake, Southern Cal, Creighton and Oregon because those guys are coming and that's not going to be an easy task for us. We have to come out and compete our butts off. Hopefully, they're learning to win and understanding the mentality it takes to come out every night and compete. We have to find a way to win every game. Tonight it was on the offensive glass, the interior stuff, and staying confident with yourself, keeping your eyes on the basket, and staying aggressive.


On UNO Justin Simmons
“He did a really good job. I have to credit him. I had seen some of his athleticism on film, but I hadn't seen his array of jump shots. Whether it was the high floater or the bank-in whatever, he did a great job. When a guy gets on a rhythm like that, you've got to get him out of rhythm. Toward the end of the first half, we denied him and tried a different screen-and-roll defense, and he had an air ball. But then early in the second half, we didn't find him in transition and he made a three from the corner. We did a better job, but we had to go full denial on him. When a kid comes in and changes your whole game plan, he's quite a weapon. I haven't seen that much out of him, and I don't know if he did that before he got to UNO, but he looked pretty good tonight. 


On if they scouted Simmons as a jump shooter?

“Not that kind of jump shooter, no. We wanted to keep him in front of us and make him beat us. He made two tough ones early: floating pull up J's in the middle of the lane with a hand right up on him. Then it got a little nutty. We thought that was okay, and we could live with that. You can't stop him from shooting, especially a guy that athletic.”


On Tom Osborne's tributes on Saturday

“He's got so much class and dignity, it's just amazing to see. And grace, he's got grace and he handles himself so well. What's amazing is that he didn't want it to be about him. He wanted to march right out before it was even done. That's coach. He's a guy that epitomizes all of Nebraska, and especially Nebraska Athletics, to me. He's got so much personal equity in everything that it's amazing. A lot of guys could have said, ‘I was one of the greatest football coaches in college history and that's enough for me.' But he went to Congress and then came back as our Athletic Director. Look how much basketball has benefitted in the last three years: last year with the new Hendricks Training Complex and next year with Pinnacle Bank Arena. I think Tom has been a vital part of that.”


UNO Head Coach Derrin Hansen

Opening statement

“I got to give our kids a lot of credit. They played really well. They played hard, especially because where we were 48 hours ago waiting in a airport in New Orleans, and the 48 hours before that we were in Lubbock. I think we really played hard today, and played well with the circumstances we had coming in. Two things as the game wore on, two things that I thought happened was I told our guys in the locker room, one thing that will not change during the season is we are not going to get 290 pounds in the post to help us rebound. That being said, something we can do better at is what we did down the stretch today, is when we ran a few things. We took a couple of quick shots which led to some run-outs and easy baskets for Nebraska. I thought they made a couple of jumpers, 15 footers down the stretch, against our zone.”


On Andre Almeida

“Yeah he did, that happens when you go BCS School vs. a lower or mid major, bodies become a factor, and that one did today against us.”


On Dylan Talley

“You get a big guard like that, a 6-foot-5 wing that can drive it and can pull up and shoot obviously that is a tough matchup. I do have to give our guys credit here. I thought we came in with a gameplan that would really follow that. We had guys take shots they didn't want to take. I thought we guarded the way we wanted to guard with a young relatively new team we have that is the best we have transferring the game plan to the floor. This is five games into a long process with a lot of new people.”


On playing with energy at the start of the game, and then falling behind in the second half

“We tried to get as many subs in the first half to try and keep fresh. There might have been one more chance to get a new wave in. I thought we were in striking distance around five and half to six minutes to go so I kept some guys on the court. Once again, they got one or two run outs, (Benny) Parker made the one when he squirted through us, and that was the end of that. So then we subbed at the end, but was I aware of it, yes. But I think on the other side of the court we didn't take care of some things offensively that we could have.”


On Justin Simmons performance

“He is capable. Justin is a good basketball player. He can make baskets on his own which is great for a coach. He also took a couple of quick ones which led to some run outs, but Justin is a really talented player. He is really athletic, long, and he is a great kid. We are happy he is on our team, once we get through this stretch I am excited to see how he matches up against Summit League guards night-in and night-out because I think I will like what I see there.”


Nebraska Guard Dylan Talley

On if his thoughts were that he knew they'd win or if that's just how it unfolded
“That's just how the game unfolded. It's my job as one of the seniors, a captain, and a leader on the team. The team needed help, so I just did that any way I could by scoring or rebounding on defense.”


On showing versatility and taking an offensive role
“I think I can do it all. Today, I showed I can score and get to the hole when we need some points. I think against Valparaiso, I only scored one point but I hustled my tail off playing defense. Any given night can be any different thing.”


On what was giving him a hard time offensively in the first half
“My shot just wasn't falling. In the second half, it still wasn't falling but I had the time to run. In time it's going to fall. Your jump shot isn't going to be on every game, but you can't let it affect your defense or any other part of your game. You have to find ways to help your team.”


On if he expected UNO to be so energized
“We realized it right from the beginning. You can't underestimate any team. It's not like we're North Carolina, and we just step on the court and beat people by just showing up. We have to bring the fight to people every game. They brought the fight to us this game so credit goes to them. We didn't expect to just walk out there and win. We knew they would fight. They had a bunch of great players. We give them a lot of credit.”


On what the team has learned after three games
“I think the chemistry is well. Today, things weren't going our way. Things were tough, but not once did anybody on the team put their head down. Not for any of the games so far did anybody put their head down, no complaining. We still are moving the ball and we work our tails off on defense. I learned that we're just a good cohesive unit. We're going to keep on working together and try to get better.”


On Justin Simmons being hot and if he wondered if he'd ever miss
“The shots he was making were unbelievable, actually. He made some incredibly tough shots on me. I'd come off the screen and he was fading to the right and put the shot up in my face through the cover. I was thinking it was impossible for him to keep doing this the whole night for forty minutes. I just wanted to keep on making his shots tough but he made some pretty good shots. He's a pretty good player.”


Nebraska Center Andre Almeida
On his shooting effort today after struggling the first two games
“All my teammates and my coaches tell me to keep shooting and don't worry about it. Next play, next play. That was my mentality today.”


On overcoming UNO's energy and emotion
“We had to find a way to win the game. I think we came out a little sloppy. I think Omaha came with the intention to kick our butt so you have to give them credit for that. We just had to find a way to win the game and protect our home court.”


On how much it helped him to get going early and score nine points quickly personally
“I think it was good personally. From a team perspective, I think we were fighting fire with fire at some point. We let them get a couple runs on us. It was good to get going, but from a team perspective we had to play better defense. We were inconsistent tonight. We didn't take advantage of some runs and allowed them to get on some runs.”


On how he felt Dylan played in the second half
“We all know Dylan can score. He's a really good player. I think it was one of the keys for us to find a way to win the game. He got it going and took the ball to the rim. Everybody knows how good of a scorer he is. I think it was the key. He got himself going and got the rest of the team going. It reflected on the other end of the court. We got a couple of stops in a row and played better defense halfway through the second half.”


On if he feels more pressure to play a good game against a smaller front line on the other team
“No, not necessarily. Every game is going to be a different line up but you have to have the same mentality. There's no difference on the pressure. It does matter if they have two seven footers or a six foot-seven center, you have to have the same mentality.”


Quick Notes
*-Nebraska improved to 3-0 while today's 75 points is a season high for the Huskers. NU also set season bests in rebounds (39) and assists (14) as well as field goals made (32)
*-Dylan Talley scored a Nebraska career high 22 points on Sunday. His previous best was 18 last season against Oregon
*-Talley also added four assists and five rebounds, marking the second time he has led the Huskers in scoring. Talley also played a NU best 38 minutes, the second straight game he has set a Husker personal best in minutes.
*-Brandon Ubel and Ray Gallegos both reached double figures in each of Nebraska's first three games. It marks the first time that either player had reached double figures in three straight games in their career
*-Andre Almeida had a season-high 19 points on 9-of-11 shooting from the field. Almeida's effort was one off his career high of 20 set in his Husker debut. Almeida also tied a career high with seven rebounds.
*-Ray Gallegos set a career high with seven rebounds, nearly doubling his previous best of four set against Creighton during the 2010-11 season
*-Nebraska grabbed 16 offensive rebounds and converted into 24 second-chance points. It was NU's most offensive rebounds since grabbing 17 against Alcorn State last December.