Huskers Top Hawkeyes, 81-77

IOWA CITY, Iowa. (KLKN) -The Nebraska men’s basketball team used a strong shooting performance and a suffocating defensive effort down the stretch to rally from a seven-point second-half deficit for an 81-77 win at Iowa Sunday afternoon.

With its fifth win in its last six games, Nebraska ended the regular season with a 16-14 record. The Huskers finished 9-11 in the Big Ten Conference, earning the No. 11 seed for the conference tournament. Nebraska will face No. 14 seed Minnesota on Wednesday, March 8, at approximately 8 p.m. inside the United Center in Chicago. Iowa, which lost for just the third time at home, finished its regular season with a 19-12 record, including an 11-9 mark in Big Ten play.

The Huskers completed the season sweep of the Hawkeyes thanks to a strong shooting performance. Nebraska shot 58 percent from the field in the game, helping the Big Red post the victory in a game where Iowa attempted 21 more shots, nine more free throws and committed nine fewer turnovers than Nebraska. The Huskers were 31-of-53 on the day, including 14-of-26 from the 3-point line (54 percent).

It was a balanced effort offensively, as all nine Huskers who attempted a shot scored at least nine points. Sam Griesel led the way with 16 points – including 3-of-4 from beyond the arc – and grabbed six rebounds. Jamarques Lawrence scored 15 points, knocking down five of his eight 3-point attempts. C.J. Wilcher was 5-of-7 from the field on his way to 12 points, while Keisei Tominaga added 11 points. Derrick Walker and Wilhelm Breidenbach chipped in nine points apiece. Walker flirted with a triple double as he added 12 rebounds and eight assists to go along with his nine points.

Defensively, Nebraska limited Iowa to 36 percent shooting. In the second half, the Husker defense harassed the Hawkeyes into an 11-of-37 performance (29.7 percent), including just 3-of-16 (18.8 percent) from the 3-point line. Nebraska’s defense did not allow a field goal over the game’s final 6:12, as Iowa missed its final seven shots.

Patrick McCaffery and Kris Murray led Iowa with 23 and 22 points, respectively. The Hawkeyes pulled down 21 offensive rebounds in the contest, leading to 31 second-chance points. Iowa added 21 points off Husker turnovers, but a 31-point advantage in those two categories was not enough to prevent Nebraska’s season series sweep.

Nebraska is the 11th seed going into the Big Ten Tournament and will play No. 14 Minnesota on Wednesday night.

Categories: Husker Sports, Sports