NEB WBB: Huskers Clash with Syracuse in NCAA First Round Friday
Posted By: Sports
For complete game information, including a PDF of Nebraska’s NCAA Tournament Media Supplement, please visit the following article on Huskers.com:
No. 9 Seed Nebraska Cornhuskers (21-10, 10-8 Big Ten)
vs. No. 8 Seed Syracuse Orange (21-9, 11-5 ACC)
Friday, March 20, 6:30 p.m. (Central)
Colonial Life Arena (Columbia, S.C.)
TV: ESPN2 (Pam Ward, Carolyn Peck)
Live Radio: Husker Sports Network (Matt Coatney, Jeff Griesch)
107.3 FM, Lincoln; 93.3 FM, Omaha; 880 AM, Lexington
Free Live Audio: Huskers.com
Huskers Clash with Syracuse in NCAA First Round Friday
The Nebraska women’s basketball team made history by earning its fourth consecutive trip to the NCAA Tournament and will take on Syracuse Friday in the first round at Columbia, S.C.
Tip-off between the ninth-seeded Cornhuskers (21-10, 10-8 Big Ten) and eighth-seeded Orange (21-9, 11-5 ACC) at Colonial Life Arena is set for 6:30 p.m. (central) with live national television coverage provided by ESPN2. Husker fans may not be able to see the game in its entirety on ESPN2 because of tournament whip-around coverage, so fans can seek more complete coverage on ESPN3.com or the WatchESPN app. Pam Ward and Carolyn Peck will be on the television call for ESPN2.
Live radio coverage from the Husker Sports Network is available with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch on stations across the network, including B107.3 FM in Lincoln, 93.3 FM in Omaha and 880 AM KRVN in Lexington. Free live audio is available on Huskers.com.
Nebraska seniors Emily Cady, Brandi Jeffery, Tear’a Laudermill and Hailie Sample made history by advancing to their fourth consecutive NCAA Tournament. The seniors, who all came to Nebraska as true freshmen in the same recruiting class prior to NU’s first season in the Big Ten in 2011-12, are also the first class in Husker history to produce four straight 20-win campaigns.
They will try to add to a school-record 96 career victories – an average of 24 wins per season. Prior to their arrival in Lincoln, only one Nebraska team had ever won more than 23 games – the 2010 Huskers who went 32-2 to claim an NCAA No. 1 seed.
Cady, a four-year starter from Seward, Neb., is set to tie a Nebraska record with her 132nd consecutive start on Friday. The 6-2 forward also needs just five rebounds to catch 2014 first-team All-American Jordan Hooper at No. 2 on the Nebraska career rebounds list (1,110). Cady ranks sixth among active NCAA rebounders with 1,105 in her career. She has added 1,441 points and 303 assists, while ranking among the top five players in school history with 114 career blocks.
Sample, a 6-1 forward from Flower Mound, Texas, has started 131 games alongside Cady, while Laudermill (Moreno Valley, Calif.) has made 61 straight starts. Jeffery (Vacherie, La.) has added 38 career starts to give the seniors more than 300 combined career starts.
Nebraska Cornhuskers (21-10, 10-8 Big Ten)
3 – Hailie Sample – 6-1 – Sr. – F – 7.5 ppg, 7.0 rpg
23 – Emily Cady – 6-2 – Sr. – F – 12.5 ppg, 10.3 rpg
1 – Tear’a Laudermill – 5-9 – Sr. – G – 13.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg
5 – Natalie Romeo – 5-7 – Fr. – G – 8.7 ppg, 2.5 rpg
13 – Brandi Jeffery – 5-7 – Sr. – G – 7.9 ppg, 6.7 rpg
Off the Bench
33 – Rachel Theriot (OUT) – 6-0 – Jr. – G – 16.5 ppg, 4.2 rpg
22 – Allie Havers – 6-5 – So. – C – 4.9 ppg, 3.0 rpg
31 – Anya Kalenta – 6-3 – Jr. – F – 3.2 ppg, 1.4 rpg
30 – Chandler Smith – 6-0 – Fr. – G – 1.6 ppg, 1.8 rpg
34 – Jasmine Cincore – 5-8 – Fr. – G – 1.3 ppg, 0.2 rpg
12 – Emily Wood – 5-5 – Fr. – G – 0.2 ppg, 0.5 rpg
11 – Esther Ramacieri – 5-8 – So. – G – 0.1 ppg, 0.5 rpg
50 – Darrien Washington – 6-2 – Fr. – F – Redshirting
Head Coach: Connie Yori (Creighton, 1986)
13th Season at NU (262-152); 25th Season Overall (457-292)
Syracuse Orange (21-9, 11-5 ACC)
1 – Alexis Peterson – 5-7 – So. – G – 15.7 ppg, 3.6 rpg
11 – Cornelia Fondren – 5-8 – Jr. – G – 7.4 ppg, 5.5 rpg
13 – Brianna Butler – 5-11 – Jr. – G – 13.3 ppg, 3.4 rpg
10 – Isabella Slim – 6-0 – So. – F – 1.9 ppg, 2.1 rpg
50 – Briana Day – 6-4 – So. – C – 9.8 ppg, 10.6 rpg
Off the Bench
0 – Diamond Henderson (OUT) – 5-6 – Sr. – G – 10.5 ppg, 1.9 rpg
22 – Taylor Ford – 6-0 – Jr. – F – 6.6 ppg, 4.8 rpg
4 – Maggie Morrison – 5-8 – Sr. – G – 2.8 ppg, 1.1 rpg
55 – Bria Day – 6-4 – So. – F – 1.1 ppg, 2.9 rpg
44 – Amber Witherspoon – 6-4 – Fr. – C – 0.5 ppg, 1.1 rpg
21 – Danielle Minott – 5-8 – Fr. – G – 1.4 ppg, 1.0 rpg
Head Coach: Quentin Hillsman (St. Mary’s, Md., 1993)
8th Season at Syracuse (167-99); 8th Season Overall (167-99)
Streaks, Stats & Milestones
• Nebraska earned its fourth straight NCAA Tournament bid and its seventh in the past nine seasons when the Huskers earned the No. 9 seed in Columbia, S.C.
• NU is 3-3 in NCAA Tournament play during the careers of seniors Emily Cady, Brandi Jeffery, Tear’a Laudermill and Hailie Sample. The Huskers advanced to the 2013 NCAA Sweet 16 as a No. 6 seed and the 2014 NCAA second round as a No. 4 seed.
• The Husker seniors own a school-record 96 wins over the past four seasons together. They are the only class in school history to produce four straight 20-win seasons. Before their arrival, Nebraska had produced only one season with more than 23 wins (32, 2009-10). The seniors have averaged 24 wins.
• Nebraska is one of just 21 Division I teams to earn four consecutive NCAA Tournament bids.
• The Huskers also have owned a perfect 100 percent Graduation Success Rate every season they have been in the NCAA Tournament under Coach Connie Yori (2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015).
• The Big Ten is 11-0 in first-round NCAA Tournament games over the last two seasons, including 5-0 in 2014 and 6-0 in 2013.
• The Huskers have produced seven 20-win seasons in the last nine years. Prior to Coach Connie Yori’s arrival in Lincoln in 2002-03, Nebraska had nine 20-win seasons in the first 28 years of the program.
• With 10 conference wins this season, Nebraska is the only team in the Big Ten to record 10 or more league wins in each of the last four years.
• Nebraska is the only school to post four straight winning Big Ten regular seasons (2012-15).
• The Huskers, who joined the Big Ten in 2011-12 for the start of the careers of its 2015 seniors, are a Big Ten-best 44-22 in Big Ten regular-season play the last four years (tied with Iowa). The Big Red have added a conference-best eight Big Ten Tournament wins for 52 total victories over Big Ten foes.
• Senior forward Emily Cady will tie a school record against Syracuse by making her 132nd start. She has started every game for Nebraska the last four years. Lindsey Moore (2010-13) also started all 132 games of her career for the Huskers, before being taken in the first round of the 2013 WNBA Draft.
• Senior forward Hailie Sample will move into a tie for third on the Nebraska career starts with Jordan Hooper (131, 2011-14) on Friday.
• With 1,105 career rebounds, Cady needs five more boards to catch 2014 first-team All-American Jordan Hooper at No. 2 on the Nebraska career list with 1,110. Hooper also ranks ninth on the Big Ten all-time rebound list, while Cady ranks 10th.
• Cady is the Big Ten’s active rebound leader and ranks No. 6 among active NCAA Division I players in career rebounds (1,105). Sample ranks third among active Big Ten rebounders with 710.
• Cady owns 11 double-doubles this season and 33 in her career. Her most recent double-double came with 21 points and 13 rebounds against Ohio State on March 1.
• Cady has 1,441 points, 1,105 rebounds, 303 assists, 140 steals and 114 blocks in her career. Cady and Sample (725 points, 710 rebounds, 227 assists) are two of only five Huskers in history to reach combined career milestones of 700 points, 700 rebounds and 200 blocks.
• Sample, who leads the Huskers and ranks second in the Big Ten by shooting 60.8 percent from the field, has been perfect from the floor seven times this season, including 4-for-4 against Illinois on March 5. Sample was also a career-best 6-for-6 at the foul line against the Illini.
• Senior guard Tear’a Laudermill averaged 14.5 points in Big Ten play. Over the last 14 games, Laudermill is averaging 16.3 points per contest. She has produced double figures in 15 of the last 16 games.
• Laudermill owns a career-high 42 steals this year.
• Laudermill (1,124) is one of three current Huskers with 1,000 points joining Emily Cady (1,441) and Rachel Theriot (1,023). Laudermill ranks 19th on the NU career scoring list.
• Junior All-America guard Rachel Theriot became the 30th 1,000-point scorer in Nebraska women’s basketball history when she scored her first field goal of the night against Illinois Jan. 29. She has 1,023 career points and is tied for fifth in Husker history with 444 career assists. Theriot underwent season-ending ankle surgery on Feb. 19. She originally injured the ankle in practice on Feb. 3.
• Brandi Jeffery has transformed herself into one of the Big Ten’s best rebounders as a senior. The 5-7 guard has grabbed 200 rebounds, surpassing her combined career total (184) entering this season. Jeffery ranks third among the Huskers with 6.7 boards per game. She produced her first career double-double with 10 points and 13 rebounds in the regular-season finale against Ohio State on March 1.
• Jeffery dished out a career-high eight assists in Nebraska’s second-round Big Ten Tournament win over Illinois on March 5.
• Natalie Romeo has started nine consecutive games in place of the injured Rachel Theriot. In 11 games as a starter this season, Romeo is averaging 13.5 points per game. She has produced double figures in six of her starts, including a career-high 26 points with a school-record-tying seven three-pointers in a Big Ten Tournament win over Illinois March 5. She added 21-point efforts in wins over Wisconsin (Feb. 15) and Minnesota (Feb. 24). She hit six threes against Penn State (Jan. 15) and Minnesota (Feb. 24).
• Romeo tied a school record and smashed the Nebraska conference tournament record with seven three-pointers against the Fighting Illini. Romeo hit seven of her first nine attempts in the first 24 minutes of the game against the Illini. The previous NU conference tournament record was four, which had been accomplished four times (Jordan Hooper, Lindsey Moore, Amanda Went, Amy Stephens).
• Romeo added four threes against Iowa at the Big Ten Tournament on March 6. Her 11 threes match Nebraska’s career conference tournament record. She is 11-for-22 in two career games.
• Over the last seven games, Romeo is averaging a team-best 15.4 points per game while shooting 40 percent from three-point range.
• Nebraska set a school-record by committing just four personal fouls in the win over Bakersfield Dec. 13. One week later in a win over High Point, the Huskers committed just eight fouls, which tied for the ninth best total in school history. They matched the eight fouls at Illinois Jan. 11. It marked the 11th time in the last 98 contests that NU has committed eight or fewer fouls in a game.
• Nebraska ranks No. 5 nationally with 13.0 personal fouls per game.
• Nebraska ranks 11th nationally in average home attendance with 5,857 fans per game at Pinnacle Bank Arena. NU averaged 6,483 fans per Big Ten home game.
Scouting the Syracuse Orange
Syracuse heads into the NCAA Tournament as a No. 8 seed after producing a 21-9 overall record that included an 11-5 mark in the ACC. The Orange tied Duke for fourth in the final conference standings, before being knocked out of the second round of the ACC Tournament by No. 13 seed Wake Forest, 85-79, on March 5. The Demon Deacons finished the season 13-20 and 2-14 in ACC regular-season action.
Syracuse, which entered the ACC Tournament with wins in six of its last seven regular-season games beginning with a 61-56 win over current No. 15 North Carolina, suffered a season-ending knee injury to 5-6 senior guard Diamond Henderson in a 60-55 win at Clemson on Feb. 26.
Henderson averaged 10.5 points, 1.9 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.1 steals in 21.5 minutes per game off the bench during the regular season.
Despite the loss of Henderson, Syracuse still has plenty of weapons in a starting five dominated by sophomores and juniors. Sophomore Alexis Peterson leads the Orange with 15.7 points, 4.2 assists and 2.4 steals per game. The 5-7 guard is also shooting a team-best 38.8 percent from three-point range.
Brianna Butler, a 5-11 junior guard, has pitched in 13.3 points and 3.4 rebounds while connecting on a team-high 88 three-pointers on the year. Although Butler has hit just 28.6 percent of her threes, she has pulled the trigger on 308 long-range attempts.
Fellow junior Cornelia Fondren has joined Butler and Peterson in the Orange’s starting lineup for 27 of 30 games this season. Fondren has averaged 7.5 points while ranking second on the team in rebounds (5.5), assists (2.7) and steals (2.1) per game.
Briana Day, a 6-4 sophomore center, gives the Orange size inside while nearly averaging a double-double with 9.8 points and a team-best 10.6 rebounds per game. Day also leads Syracuse with 81 blocks in 29 starts on the year. Her twin sister, Bria, provides identical size in 1.1 points and 2.9 boards in 10.2 minutes per game off the bench.
Sophomore Isabella Slim, a 6-0 forward, rounds out the Syracuse starting five with 1.9 points and 2.1 rebounds per game. She has started all 30 games alongside Peterson and Butler, but averaged just 1.3 points and 1.3 rebounds in ACC play.
Junior Taylor Ford, a 6-0 forward, has added production off the bench with 6.6 points and 4.8 rebounds per game, while Maggie Morrison is the only active senior for Syracuse in the NCAA Tournament. Morrison played in 26 games this season, averaging 2.8 points and 1.1 rebounds as a 5-8 guard.
A defense-first unit, Syracuse features plenty of zone defense and pressing style. The Orange rank among the nation’s top teams with a plus-6.8 team turnover margin while holding opponents to 60.4 points per game on the season. They win the possession battle with a plus-0.8 rebounding margin.
Those extra possessions allow the Orange to overcome some occasional shooting woes. Syracuse has hit just 36.7 percent of its field goal attempts on the season, including just 28.4 percent of its threes, while connecting on just 67 percent of its free throws.
However, the Orange have attempted 273 more field goals, including 236 more three-pointers than their opponents. They also have made 135 more trips to the free throw line than the opposition.
Nebraska vs. Syracuse Series History
Nebraska and Syracuse will be meeting for the first time in school history when the two teams take the floor at Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, S.C., on Friday.
The Huskers are 1-0 against the ACC this season, with a 60-54 victory over No. 9 Duke on Dec. 3 at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln, as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
Syracuse went 1-1 against the Big Ten this season with a 61-39 run past Penn State on Dec. 4 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, before dropping an 89-76 decision to Michigan State on Dec. 21.
Cady Bar the Boards: Husker Among Big Ten’s All-Time Rebounders
Nebraska senior Emily Cady joined the Big Ten’s all-time top 10 in rebounds during NU’s Big Ten Tournament win against Illinois on March 5. The 6-2 forward from Seward, Neb., enters the NCAA Tournament at No. 10 on the Big Ten career list with 1,105 boards. She needs five rebounds to catch former Nebraska teammate Jordan Hooper (2011-14) at No. 9 on that list with 1,110.
If Cady can grab five more boards, she will match Hooper at No. 2 on the Nebraska career list. Cady is one of just five Huskers and one of 17 Big Ten players in history to reach 1,000 career rebounds. Janet Smith (1979-82) holds the Nebraska record with 1,280 rebounds.
On the national level, Cady ranks sixth among NCAA Division I active rebounders. Cady is one of just four active players nationally from Power Five conferences to produce 1,000 career rebounds.
Husker Seniors Secure Fourth Straight 20-Win Season
Nebraska’s four-player senior class of Emily Cady, Hailie Sample, Tear’a Laudermill and Brandi Jeffery form the heart of the Husker lineup in 2014-15, after helping the Big Red to the most successful four-year stretch in school history.
Cady has started all 131 games in her career while Sample has made 130 starts, helping the Huskers to four consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances and an average of 24 wins per season.
The Husker seniors are 96-35 (.733 winning percentage) during their four seasons in Lincoln, the best winning percentage of any class in school history.
Cady Set for School-Record-Tying 132nd Consecutive Start
Nebraska senior Emily Cady is expected to make her school-record-tying 132nd straight start in the first round of the NCAA Tournament against Syracuse on Friday in South Carolina. Lindsey Moore (2010-13) owns the NU career record with 132 starts (also consecutive).
Senior forward Hailie Sample has started 130 of 131 career games alongside Cady, dating back to the first games of their freshman season at NU in 2011-12.
Senior Tear’a Laudermill has made 61 straight starts, while senior Brandi Jeffery has started 14 consecutive games and freshman Natalie Romeo has made nine straight starts.
Junior point guard Rachel Theriot started 82 straight games until Theriot being lost for the season with an ankle injury. She played her final game of the season against Michigan on Feb. 1.
Over the past 10 seasons (including 2014-15) Nebraska has used only 27 different starting lineups over 323 games. The 2011-12, 2006-07 and 2003-04 Huskers all used the same starting lineup for every game.
Husker Hot Shots – Nebraska’s Starting Five
#23, Emily Cady, 6-2, Sr., F, Seward, Neb. (12.5 ppg, 10.3 rpg, 2.7 apg)
• One of the nation’s most versatile forwards, Emily Cady earned second-team All-Big Ten honors in 2014 and 2015. She enters the NCAA Tournament averaging 12.5 points, 10.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game.
• Cady ranks among the top five players in Nebraska history in rebounds (3rd, 1,105), blocks (5th, 114), free throw percentage (5th, .804), double-doubles (4th, 33), minutes played (2nd, 4,187) and games started (T2nd, 131).
• Cady ranks third in Husker history and 10th in Big Ten Conference history with 1,105 career rebounds. She powered past first-team All-American Kelsey Griffin (1,019, 2006-10) on the NU chart by pulling down a career-high 19 rebounds against No. 14 Iowa Feb. 12. She owns 16 double-figure rebound games as a senior, including 10 in the past 17 contests.
• Only Janet Smith (1,280, 1979-82) and first-team All-American Jordan Hooper (1,110, 2011-14) own more career rebounds in Husker history than Cady.
• Cady’s 19 rebounds against Iowa Feb. 12 tied for the ninth-best total in Nebraska history and marked the most boards by a Husker since the turn of the century. Cady grabbed 18 rebounds in the first meeting with the Hawkeyes this season.
• Cady has climbed into 10th on the Big Ten career rebound chart and needs five boards to match former Husker Jordan Hooper (1,110, 2011-14) in ninth on the Big Ten’s all-time list.
• Cady ranks sixth among all active NCAA Division I career rebounders. Cady’s 1,105 rebounds rank third among all active players in Power Five conferences.
• Cady owns 11 double-doubles this year, including six in Big Ten regular-season play.
• With 33 career double-doubles, Cady ranks fourth in school history behind only first-team All-Americans Jordan Hooper (40, 2011-14), Kelsey Griffin (40, 2006-10) and Karen Jennings (36, 1990-93).
• Cady enters the NCAA Tournament game with 4,167 career minutes played, trailing only All-American Lindsey Moore (4,360, 2010-13) on the Nebraska career list.
• Cady earned her first career Big Ten Player-of-the-Week award Dec. 16, after averaging 15.5 points, 13.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.5 blocks in wins over Creighton (Dec. 11) and Bakersfield (Dec. 13).
• She is the Big Ten Conference’s active rebound leader with 1,105 in her career. NU’s Hailie Sample ranks third with 710, while Iowa’s Samantha Logic is second.
• Cady produced a career-high 25 points to go along with nine rebounds, two steals and a block in just 23 minutes in a win over Utah Nov. 23.
• Cady nearly produced a triple-double with 12 points, 11 rebounds and a career-high eight assists in a win over Pepperdine Nov. 15.
• Cady owns 1,441 points, 1,105 rebounds, 303 assists, 140 steals and 114 blocks. She is the only player in Nebraska history with 1,400 points, 1,000 rebounds, 300 assists, 100 steals and 100 career blocks.
• Cady ranks fifth in NU history with 114 career blocks. She needs 12 blocks to climb to fourth place.
• With 303 assists, Cady ranks 12th in Nebraska history on the school assist list. Cady is two assists shy of former starting point guard Lis Brenden in 11th (305, 1993-96). Cady needs 23 assists to join the Husker career top 10.
• Only one player (Janel McCarville, Minnesota, 1,835 points, 1,206 rebounds, 310 assists) in Big Ten history has ever produced 1,500 points, 1,000 rebounds and 300 assists in a career. Cady needs 59 points to reach those impressive milestones. Two other players from current Big Ten institutions, Alyssa Thomas and Marissa Coleman, achieved those combined plateaus at Maryland before the Terrapins joined the Big Ten in 2014-15.
• Cady’s 1,441 career points rank No. 13 in Husker history.
• In 2013-14, Cady tied Jordan Hooper for second in the Big Ten with 14 double-doubles, while ranking third in the league with 9.2 rebounds per game. Cady ranked 24th in scoring (12.7 ppg), fifth in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.5-to-1), seventh in free throw percentage (.858), eighth in field goal percentage (.495) and 12th in assists (3.1 apg). In Big Ten games-only, Cady ranked third with a 2.0 assist-to-turnover ratio trailing only Husker point guard Rachel Theriot (2.7) and Iowa point guard Samantha Logic (2.2). Cady ranked eighth in conference play in assists (4.1 apg). She had eight double-doubles in 16 conference games.
• The best passing forward in the Big Ten, Cady’s 102 assists led all conference forwards in 2013-14. Her 1.5-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio also led all players in the conference at the position. In Big Ten play, her 2.0 assist-to-turnover ratio was better than every starting guard except first-team All-Big Ten point guards Rachel Theriot (Nebraska) and Samantha Logic (Iowa).
#1, Tear’a Laudermill, 5-9, Sr., G, Moreno Valley, Calif. (13.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 2.2 apg, 1.5 spg)
• Tear’a Laudermill emerged as a rising star for the Huskers to earn second-team All-Big Ten honors as a junior. She added honorable-mention All-Big Ten accolades as a senior by producing career-best averages of 13.8 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 1.5 steals per game.
• Laudermill is averaging 16.2 points per game over the last 14 contests.
• Laudermill ranks 19th in Nebraska history with 1,124 career points, and is one of three current Huskers with 1,000 points, including Emily Cady (1,441) and Rachel Theriot (1,023).
• Laudermill’s 45 steals on the season are a career high and she owns 35 steals over the last 18 games.
• Laudermill has significantly increased her rebounding production this season, and her role on the glass continues to grow. She is averaging a career-best 3.5 rebounds per game. She entered the season averaging just 2.0 rebounds per game in her career.
• She tied a Nebraska single-game record for the second time in her career by connecting on seven threes (7-15), including six in the second half, at Alabama on Dec. 7. Laudermill finished with 25 points. She also hit seven threes, including six in the first half, in Nebraska’s win over No. 8 Penn State on Feb. 24, 2014. She finished with a career-high 27 points against PSU.
• Laudermill is Nebraska’s No. 1 active career three-point shooter with 157 makes to rank fifth on the Husker career list.
• Laudermill (125) is one of four Huskers who have played 125 or more career games, joining Emily Cady-131, Hailie Sample-131 and Brandi Jeffery-125.
• Laudermill notched her 11th career 20-point game and sixth of the season with 20 points at Northwestern Feb. 18, after pouring in 20 points against Wisconsin Feb. 15. She also had 24 points against the Badgers on Jan. 22. She had a season-high 25 points at Alabama Dec. 7, before scoring 22 against High Point Dec. 20. She added 20 points in NU’s 82-61 win at Washington State on Nov. 19.
• In a pair of preliminary mock drafts for the 2015 WNBA Draft, Laudermill has been ranked among the top 25 players in the nation. She slotted as the No. 10 overall pick by DraftSite.com, while College Sports Madness slotted her as the No. 24 overall pick.
• She has produced double digits in 36 of her last 48 games, after managing double figures in just 11 of her first 77. She owns 47 career double-figure scoring games.
• Laudermill averaged 15.2 points per game over the last 17 contests of 2013-14, including the first five 20-point games of her career. She closed the season with 22 points against BYU, including 12 points in the final 2:30. She added 20 points in NU’s Big Ten semifinal win over No. 19 Michigan State and a career-high 27 points in the Big Red’s home win over No. 8 Penn State on Feb. 24.
• Laudermill tied a school record with seven threes in Nebraska’s 94-74 win over No. 8 Penn State Feb. 24, 2014. She hit her first six threes in the first half and closed the night 7-of-10 to lead Nebraska to one of the best three-point shooting nights (16-22, .727) in school history.
• Laudermill averaged 13.5 points in 2014 Big Ten play, while shooting a sizzling 44.3 percent from three-point range, which ranked fourth in Big Ten games-only. Her 2.4 three-pointers per game also tied for fifth in league action. She led the Big Red with 21 steals in conference action.
#13, Brandi Jeffery, 5-7, Sr., G, Vacherie, La. (7.9 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 2.3 apg, 1.5 spg)
• Brandi Jeffery is playing the best basketball of her career, averaging 7.9 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 1.5 steals in 30 games with 29 starts this season.
• Jeffery produced the third-highest scoring game of her career with 14 points to go along with five rebounds, two assists, two steals and a block against No. 14 Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament quarterfinals on March 6.
• She notched a career-high eight assists to go along with six points and nine rebounds in Nebraska’s Big Ten Tournament win over Illinois on March 5.
• Jeffery produced her first career double-double with 10 points, 13 rebounds and four assists on Senior Day against Ohio State on March 1.
• Over the last eight games, Jeffery is averaging 9.1 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists.
• Jeffery was slowed by a bone bruise from Jan. 22 through Feb. 1, which was suffered in the closing minutes of NU’s win over Purdue Jan. 19. She played one of the best games of her career against the Boilermakers, scoring 13 points to go along with six rebounds, two assists and two steals.
• Jeffery did not start against Penn State Jan. 15 because of an administrative error. She missed the Wisconsin game Jan. 22 with the bruised knee.
• She produced one of the best performances of her career with 16 points, five rebounds, two assists and three steals against Iowa on Feb. 12. It marked the second-best scoring total of her career.
• Jeffery has scored in double figures 10 times, including six double-digit efforts in her last 15 games. • Jeffery owns 19 career double-digit scoring efforts.
• Jeffery owns career single-season highs in points (236), rebounds (200), assists (69) and steals (44) this season.
• Jeffery’s most impressive gains have come on the glass, where she ranks third among the Huskers with 6.7 rebounds per game. With 200 rebounds this season, she has surpassed her previous career total (184) entering the year. Her 200 rebounds this season have come in 496 fewer minutes than the 184 rebounds she grabbed in 1,425 minutes over her first three years at Nebraska.
• She owns 44 steals this season, more than doubling her total of 19 from 2013-14. She has at least one steal in all but five games for the Huskers this season.
• Jeffery (125) is one of four Husker seniors who have played 125 or more career games, joining Emily Cady-131, Hailie Sample-131 and Tear’a Laudermill-125.
• Jeffery erupted for a career-high 19 points in the season-opening victory over Pepperdine on Nov. 15. Her previous career scoring high came with 12 points against both Florida State and Mississippi Valley State in November of 2011.
• She owns three 11-point efforts (Alcorn State, Nov. 16; Washington State, Nov. 19; UCLA, Nov. 28), and three 10-point performances (Michigan State, Jan. 8, Penn State, Jan. 15, Ohio State, March 1) this season.
• She entered 2014-15 with career averages of 3.6 points, 1.9 rebounds and 1.0 assist per game.
• One of four seniors on the roster, including Emily Cady, Hailie Sample and Tear’a Laudermill, Jeffery has helped the Huskers to a 96-35 record and four NCAA tournaments.
#3, Hailie Sample, 6-0, Sr., F, Flower Mound, Texas (7.5 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 2.0 apg)
• Hailie Sample earned Nebraska’s Big Ten Sportsmanship Award in 2015, after claiming a spot on the 2014 Big Ten All-Defensive Team. She was Nebraska’s Defensive MVP in 2013-14.
• Sample ranks second in the Big Ten with her 60.8 field goal percentage, trailing only Ohio State’s Alexa Hart (.622). Through her first three seasons, Sample shot just 41.6 percent from the field.
• She is the Big Ten’s No. 3 active career rebounder with 710, trailing only teammate Emily Cady (1,105) and Iowa’s Samantha Logic. Sample had a season-high 14 rebounds against Illinois Jan. 29 and added her second double-digit rebound game of the season with 11 boards at Rutgers Feb. 5, before notching 10 boards against Wisconsin Feb. 15. She posted her fourth double-digit rebound game of the year with 10 rebounds against No. 14 Iowa on March 6.
• Sample ranks 10th on the Nebraska career rebound list with 710.
• Sample started the first 115 games of her career before not starting against Penn State on Jan. 15. She owns 130 career starts to rank fourth in Husker history.
• Sample produced a season-high 16 points to go with nine rebounds and a career-high matching three steals at Washington State Nov. 19.
• She had 16 points on 6-of-6 shooting to lead the Huskers to a 60-54 win over No. 9 Duke Dec. 3.
• Sample had a 15-point performance against Purdue Jan. 19.
• She pitched in 14 points on a perfect shooting night (4-of-4 FG, 6-of-6 FT) while adding seven rebounds and four assists in a Big Ten Tournament win over Illinois March 5. She added 14 points on 7-of-7 shooting in a win over Michigan Feb. 1.
• Sample added another outstanding game with 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting in the win at Michigan State Jan. 8. She hit a pair of free throws with 5.4 seconds left to seal the 71-67 win. She had 13 points and nine rebounds against Bakersfield Dec. 13. She produced another double-digit effort with 12 points in a win at Indiana.
• Sample has been perfect from the floor seven times this year, including Michigan (7-7), Duke (6-6), Illinos (4-4, Big Ten), Alcorn State (4-4), at Illinois (3-3), Pepperdine (3-3) and Northern Colorado (1-1).
• She produced her third career double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds in the 2014 NCAA second-round game against BYU on March 24. It was her second career double-double in the NCAA Tournament and her second double-double in a three-game span, joining 11 points and a career-high 15 rebounds in Nebraska’s Big Ten Tournament Championship Game win over No. 23 Iowa on March 9, 2014.
• Sample averaged 7.5 points and a team-leading 10.0 rebounds in the 2014 Big Ten Tournament. Her 30 total rebounds and 16 offensive boards led the tournament.
• Sample’s 15 rebounds in the 2014 Big Ten Championship Game were a Nebraska Big Ten Tournament record and tied Nafeesah Brown (vs. Kansas, 1993, Big Eight) for the second-highest rebounding total ever by a Husker in a conference tournament game. Only Shelly Block (16 vs. Oklahoma State, 1987, Big Eight) pulled down more boards in a league tournament game than Sample.
• Sample ranked 15th overall in the Big Ten in rebounding (6.4 rpg), while ranking seventh in the Big Ten on the offensive glass (2.5 rpg) in 2013-14.
• Sample owns 24 career double-digit scoring games, including nine each in 2013-14 and 2014-15. She also owns 10 career double-figure rebound games, including four in 2014-15.
#5, Natalie Romeo, 5-7, Fr., G, Martinez, Calif. (8.7 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.4 apg)
• NU’s top guard off the bench through the first four games, freshman Natalie Romeo missed eight straight games (UCLA, Nov. 28 through Minnesota, Dec. 29). She returned to action for Nebraska’s Big Ten home opener with Maryland Jan. 3. She has played in 19 straight games, including nine consecutive starts in place of the injured Rachel Theriot heading into the NCAA Tournament.
• Romeo led Nebraska by averaging 20.0 points in a pair of Big Ten Tournament games. She erupted for a career-high 26 points in a win over Illinois March 5. She tied a school record with seven threes against the Illini to set Nebraska’s all-time conference tournament record. She tied the previous conference tournament record with four threes the next night in a loss to No. 14 Iowa.
• Romeo’s 11 three-pointers (11-22) in her first two career Big Ten Tournament games tied the Nebraska career conference tournament record for three-pointers made.
• In 11 starts, Romeo is averaging 13.5 points per game, while hitting 35-of-91 threes (.385).
• Over her last nine games in the starting lineup in place of Rachel Theriot, Romeo is averaging 13.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 1.0 steal while playing a team-high 34.6 minutes per game.
• In 17 Big Ten games, Romeo averaged 8.3 points while hitting 32 three-pointers.
• Romeo scored 21 points and hit six three-pointers in a win over Minnesota Feb. 24. She hit four threes in the second half. She notched her first of three 20-point scoring efforts on the season with 21 points in Nebraska’s win over Wisconsin Feb. 15. She hit 7-of-11 shots from the floor, including 3-of-6 threes. She also matched her career high with four assists.
• She sealed Nebraska’s road win at Indiana Feb. 18 with four free throws in one-and-one situations in the final 30 seconds. Romeo finished with seven points against the Hoosiers, after scoring 13 points on three threes in a loss at Northwestern Feb. 18.
• Romeo hit the game-winning shot on a three from the right corner with 1:11 left to give Nebraska its only lead of the night in a 59-57 victory over Illinois Jan. 29. She hit NU’s first and last field goals of the game to finish with six points and three assists.
• She erupted for 18 points and six three-pointers in 26 minutes in a win over Penn State Jan. 15. Romeo added three rebounds and three assists while making her first career start. She made her second career start in a win at Wisconsin Jan. 22, when she scored nine points.
• Romeo made her third career start at No. 5 Maryland Feb. 8, when she scored eight points and grabbed a career-high five rebounds. It was her first of nine straight starts entering the NCAA Tournament.
• Romeo saw extensive playing time on opening weekend (Nov. 15-16), averaging 6.5 points, 2.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.0 steal in 20.0 minutes per game in wins over Pepperdine and Alcorn State.
• Romeo earned first-team All-California Elite honors from Cal-Hi Sports in 2014.
• She was a two-time first-team All-California Division II pick at Carondelet High School.
• Romeo was rated as the No. 55 Player in the Nation by ESPN (No. 12 Point Guard) and the No. 27 Player in the Nation (No. 6 Point Guard) by Full Court Press.
• She averaged 19.8 points, 7.8 assists and 5.6 steals as a senior at Carondelet High School. Romeo finished her four-year high school career with 2,151 points, 552 rebounds, 735 assists and 613 steals and finished No. 2 on Carondelet’s all-time scoring list behind Stanford All-American Jayne Appel.
Theriot Lost for Season after Ankle Surgery Feb. 19
Nebraska point guard Rachel Theriot underwent season-ending ankle surgery on Feb. 19. She injured the ankle in practice on Feb. 3. Through 21 games in 2014-15, the 2014 Big Ten Tournament MVP averaged 16.5 points, 4.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game.
Theriot is expected to return for her senior season in 2015-16 with 1,023 career points and 444 career assists. Before her injury, Theriot was No. 3 among all active juniors in NCAA Division I in career assists. She led the Big Ten and ranked among NCAA leaders with her 92.6 free throw percentage as a junior.
Last season, Theriot earned honorable-mention All-America honors while claiming first-team All-Big Ten accolades. The 2015 preseason All-Big Ten pick was also a candidate for the Wade, Naismith, Wooden and Lieberman awards as a junior.
Sample Earns Spot in WBCA “So You Want To Be A Coach” Program
Nebraska senior forward Hailie Sample will be part of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s (WBCA) 13th annual “So You Want To Be A Coach” program in conjunction with the 2015 WBCA Convention and NCAA Women’s Final Four in Tampa, Fla., April 3-5.
The program is designed to increase understanding and the application of necessary skills to secure coaching positions in women’s basketball. It is also intended to raise awareness of competencies necessary for success in coaching while introducing former female players to coaches and administrators.
Sample joins a recent string of former Huskers to the “So You Want To Be A Coach” Program, including current Nebraska graduate assistant Meghin Williams and former NU GA Dominque Kelley, who is now serving a full-time role at Drake.
Other Big Ten players in this year’s program include Indiana’s Andrea Mize and Penn State’s Tori Waldner.
Double Trouble: Cady Climbing Husker Career Chart
Emily Cady ranks fourth in Nebraska history with 33 career double-doubles, including 11 double-doubles through 31 games in 2014-15. Cady trails only Nebraska’s first-team All-Americans Jordan Hooper (40, 2011-14), Kelsey Griffin (40, 2006-10) and Karen Jennings (36, 1990-93) on the Husker career double-doubles list. The 6-2 forward from Seward, Neb., tied Hooper for second in the Big Ten with 14 double-doubles in 2013-14. They became the first Husker teammates to both produce double-figure double-doubles in the same season.
Cady has joined Hooper, Kelsey Griffin and Karen Jennings as the only players in Husker history with two double-digit double-double campaigns. Cady is one of just six Huskers in history with 10 or more double-doubles in a season, including Griffin (10, 2006-07; 20, 2009-10), Jennings (13, 1990-91; 13, 1991-92), Nafeesah Brown (16, 1993-94), Maurtice Ivy (10, 1985-86) and Carol Garey (10, 1978-79). Nebraska players have produced 11 double-digit double-double seasons.
Huskers Rank Among National Attendance Leaders
Nebraska enters the 2015 NCAA Tournament ranked No. 11 nationally in average home attendance with 5,857 fans per game, including one game at Bob Devaney Sports Center (3,321 vs. Utah, Nov. 23).
In 18 home games, the Huskers attracted 110,892 fans including 10 of the top-16 largest home non-conference crowds in school history in 2013-14.
Nebraska’s total home attendance of 110,892 ranked No. 8 nationally, while NU’s average home attendance of 6,161 ranked 11th in 2013-14.
In 33 all-time home games at Pinnacle Bank Arena, the Huskers own an impressive 28-5 record (.848 winning percentage) while averaging 6,100 fans per game (201,278 total fans/33 games).
Nebraska attracted a non-conference school-record crowd of 9,750 to open its stay in the building with a win over UCLA on Nov. 8, 2013. The Huskers have averaged more than 5,000 fans per non-conference game each of the first two seasons at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Before moving to the new arena, NU had never averaged more than 4,049 fans per game in non-conference home play.
Big Red, Big Picture
• NU has earned NCAA Tournament trips seven of the past nine seasons (2007, 2008, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015).
• The Huskers have advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16 twice in the last five seasons (2010, 2013).
• Nebraska’s No. 9 seed in the 2015 NCAA Tournament marks the fourth time in school history the Huskers have been a No. 9 seed in the tournament. The last time the Huskers were seeded ninth came with a 64-61 loss to Coach Dawn Staley’s No. 8 seed Temple in Raleigh, N.C., in 2007. NU was a No. 9 seed in trips to the NCAA Tournament in 1998 and 1996.
• Nebraska’s 2014-15 recruiting class is ranked No. 8 nationally by ESPN – the best class in school history. The 2013-14 recruiting class was ranked No. 9 by ESPN. They are the two best classes in school history.
• Nebraska’s No. 13 final national ranking in 2014 the Associated Press Poll was the second-highest final ranking in school history, trailing only NU’s No. 4 AP finish in 2010. The AP produces its final ranking at the end of the regular season and does not do another poll during or after the NCAA Tournament.
• Nebraska was ranked No. 19 in the final regular-season NCAA RPI heading into the 2014 NCAA Tournament.
• Nebraska’s No. 4 seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament marked the second-best seed the Huskers ever earned in the Big Dance, trailing only NU’s No. 1 seed in 2010.
• Coach Connie Yori is the winningest coach in Husker history (262 victories) and has won conference coach-of-the-year honors in the Big Ten (2013, 2014), Big 12 (2012) and Missouri Valley (2002). She was the national coach-of-the-year in 2010.
Nebraska Posts Perfect GSR for 10th Straight Season
Nebraska Coach Connie Yori would be the first to say that nobody’s perfect. However, in the eyes of the NCAA’s Division I Graduation Success Rate (GSR), that’s exactly what her Husker program has been for 10 consecutive years. Nebraska is the only program among the 14 Big Ten Conference schools to accomplish the perfect score for 10 straight years.
The NCAA announced the release of its annual Graduation Success Rate report on Tuesday, Oct. 28, and Nebraska was a national leader in women’s basketball for the 10th straight season, dating back to 2004-05.
Yori, who is in her 13th season at Nebraska, joined Coach Robin Krapfl’s women’s golf program, Coach Scott Jacobson’s women’s tennis program and Coach John Cook’s volleyball program as Nebraska teams who have produced perfect 100 percent rates each of the last 10 years.
Nebraska was one of five Big Ten women’s basketball programs to post 100 percent rates in 2013-14, joining Penn State, Purdue, Michigan and Illinois. All 14 Big Ten women’s programs posted GSR rates above 80 percent last season.
Huskers Set Record for TV Exposure in 2014-15
Nebraska will extend its school record by playing its 19th nationally televised game of the season when the Huskers take on Syracuse in the first round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament in Columbia, S.C., on March 20. The game will be televised live by ESPN2. It will be NU’s second appearance of the season on ESPN2.
Nebraska appeared 13 times on the Big Ten Network, while adding one game on CBS, one on FoxSports1 and two on the Pac-12 Networks.
Nebraska set a school record by playing 16 nationally televised regular-season games in 2014-15. The Huskers filled the BTN airwaves with 11 regular-season appearances on the network.
Nebraska had never had more than 11 regular-season games televised in a year, and the record for nationally televised games in a season was 15 (including conference and NCAA tournaments).
In addition to their 11 BTN games, the Huskers faced Maryland on CBS at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Saturday, Jan. 3, in the conference’s premier slot for women’s basketball all season long. It was Nebraska’s second appearance on CBS in the last three years. The Huskers also battled the Terrapins on ESPN2 on Sunday, Feb. 8, in College Park.
Nebraska made its first two national TV appearances of the year on the Pac-12 Network, when the Huskers won at Washington State (Nov. 19) and UCLA (Nov. 28).
The Huskers played their third nationally televised road non-conference game at Creighton on Thursday, Dec. 11. It was Nebraska’s first-ever appearance on Fox Sports 1.
The Huskers opened their BTN national TV schedule with an impressive 60-54 win over No. 9
Duke in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge on Dec. 3 at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
NU tipped its first 18-game Big Ten Conference season on BTN at Minnesota on Monday, Dec. 29. The Big Red were back on BTN for a thrilling 71-67 victory at Michigan State on Thursday, Jan. 8.
The Huskers returned home for a pair of wins on BTN against Penn State (Jan. 15) and Purdue (Jan. 19). Nebraska was back on BTN for a Monday night clash at Iowa on Jan. 26. The Huskers returned to BTN for their first-ever road trip to Rutgers on Thursday, Feb. 5, before returning home for a BTN rematch with Iowa on Thursday, Feb. 12. NU was back on BTN for a road game at Indiana, Feb. 21, before returning home to play Minnesota on the network on Tuesday, Feb. 24. The Huskers added their final BTN regular-season game against Ohio State on Sunday, March 1.
NU continued its BTN appearances in the Big Ten Tournament by opening with a second-round win over Illinois on March 5, before making its final BTN showing of the year against No. 14 Iowa on March 6.
NCAA Tournament Changes First & Second Round Sites
The NCAA Tournament Selection Show was back on ESPN on Monday, March 16, before the ESPN family of networks presents every game of the 2015 NCAA Tournament, March 20-April 7.
New this year to the NCAA Tournament, first- and second-round games were awarded to the top-16 seeds bidding for home sites. A shift from the predetermined home sites in the first two rounds in recent years. NCAA Regionals will be held in Oklahoma City, Okla., Greensboro, N.C., Albany, N.Y., and Sacramento, Calif., before the Tampa Bay Times Forum hosts the 2015 NCAA Women’s Final Four, April 5-7.