NEB WBB: Huskers to Play 20 at Home, Head to UConn

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Huskers to Play 20 Home Games, Travel to NCAA Champ UConn in 2015-16

Lincoln – The Nebraska women’s basketball team will play 20 home games, including 18 regular-season contests at Pinnacle Bank Arena in 2015-16.

Coach Connie Yori announced the Huskers’ full 13-game regular-season non-conference schedule on Monday, July 13. Nebraska’s schedule features 11 home non-conference games and two home exhibition games to tip-off its third season at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

“We love the fact that we will be playing 20 home games again at Pinnacle Bank Arena this season,” Yori said. “We feel like we have the best fans and one of the best all-around atmospheres in the nation for women’s basketball here at Nebraska. Our players have been working hard this summer to prepare for our trip to Australia in August, and we hope that will help get our young team ready for a new season.”

The early season home games will give fans their first chance to see 2015 Nebraska High School Player of the Year Maddie Simon and 2013 and 2014 Nebraska High School Player of the Year Jess Shepard together in action in their Husker uniforms.

The games also should mark 2014 All-America point guard Rachel Theriot’s return to the court after missing the final 11 games of 2014-15 with an ankle injury. Newcomer Kyndal Clark, the 2014 Missouri Valley Conference Player of the Year at Drake, could make her Husker debut as a senior sharp-shooter, along with freshman forward Rachel Blackburn.

Sophomore Natalie Romeo, who proved herself as one of the nation’s most dangerous young three-point shooters down the stretch in 2014-15, anchors a talented group of guards that includes fellow sophomores Jasmine Cincore, Chandler Smith and Emily Wood, along with junior Esther Ramacieri.

Junior Allie Havers, a 6-5 center, is eager to contend for a starting job alongside fellow posts Anya Kalenta and Darrien Washington in a new look Nebraska lineup.

Nebraska’s 2014-15 season ticket holders were mailed renewal notices from the Athletic Ticket Office on July 2. NU’s new “Seat Yourself” ticket process will begin in late-August. Fans who would like to become season ticket holders and be included in this year’s online “Seat Yourself” process can visit Huskers.com/Tickets and join the Women’s Basketball Season Ticket Request List.

Reserved season tickets for 2015-16 Nebraska women’s basketball games are just $180 for 20 games. Adult general admission season tickets are $90, while youth general admission seats for the year are just $40.

One of the marquee home games for the 2015-16 non-conference season was previously announced with Nebraska’s Big Ten/ACC Challenge matchup against North Carolina State on Wednesday, Dec. 3. The Huskers also will face in-state rival Creighton (Dec. 6) and Arkansas State (Dec. 21) in a busy home non-conference schedule. Arkansas State won 24 games a year ago and finished in the top 50 in the NCAA RPI before advancing to the second round of the Postseason WNIT.

Nebraska’s season will tip off with its exhibition opener against Nebraska-Kearney on Sunday, Nov. 1, before the Huskers take on Winona State to wrap up exhibition play on Sunday, Nov. 8 at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

NU’s regular season begins on Saturday, Nov. 14, when the Huskers take on Arkansas-Pine Bluff. It will be the first of four straight home games in the first two weekends of the regular season, followed by North Florida (Monday, Nov. 16), North Carolina Central (Saturday, Nov. 21) and Southern University (Monday, Nov. 23).

After the four-game home stand, the young Huskers will face a monumental road test at defending NCAA champion UConn in Storrs on Saturday, Nov. 28. The Huskies, who return four starters from last year’s squad that finished 38-1, have won three consecutive NCAA titles and nine crowns since 2000. UConn will return to Pinnacle Bank Arena in 2016-17 to complete a home-and-home series with the Huskers.

The only previous meeting between Nebraska and UConn came in the Preseason WNIT on Nov. 21, 1997. UConn advanced to the 2014 NCAA Women’s Final Four by winning the NCAA Lincoln Regional in the Huskers’ first season at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

Following the road game with the Huskies, Nebraska returns to Lincoln for a three-game home stand that starts with NC State and Creighton before closing out with Evansville (Dec. 8). The Huskers then return to the road for another marquee matchup, this time at Pac-12 power California. Nebraska will take on the Golden Bears in Berkeley on Saturday, Dec. 12, in the first-ever meeting between the two schools. Cal is set to complete the home-and-home series with the Huskers at Pinnacle Bank Arena in 2016-17.

After battling the Golden Bears, the Huskers will return home for Finals Week before facing off with Northern Arizona on Saturday, Dec. 19, at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Nebraska concludes its home non-conference schedule against Arkansas State on Monday, Dec. 21.

Dates for the 2016 Big Ten regular season have not been set, but Nebraska will play nine home conference games at Pinnacle Bank Arena, including battles with 2015 NCAA Tournament teams Iowa, Rutgers and Northwestern. The Huskers also will face Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin in Lincoln this season.

The Big Red will face Big Ten road challenges at Maryland, which advanced to the 2015 NCAA Women’s Final Four, NCAA Tournament qualifiers Ohio State, Rutgers, Minnesota and Northwestern along with WNIT semifinalist Michigan. Indiana, Penn State, and Purdue round out NU’s road schedule.

The regular-season should prepare Nebraska’s young team for battle at the 2016 Big Ten Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, March 2-6.

The announcement of the NCAA Tournament field will be made on Monday, March 14. The NCAA first- and second-rounds will be held March 18-21 at 16 campus sites, before NCAA Regionals in Bridgeport, Conn., Dallas, Texas, Lexington, Ky., and Sioux Falls, S.D. The NCAA Women’s Final Four will be held at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, April 3-5.