NEB WBB: Penn State Pulls Away from Huskers Late

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Posted By: Sports

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Courtesy: UNL Media Relations

University Park, Pa. – Jessica Shepard notched her 20th career double-double and 10th of the season with 20 points and 12 rebounds, while Rylie Cascio Jensen added a career-high 15 points off the bench, but it was not enough to prevent Penn State from pulling away down the stretch for an 86-69 win over the Nebraska women’s basketball team on Thursday night at the Bryce Jordan Center.

The Huskers were tied with the Lady Lions at 50 with just under four minutes left in the third quarter, before Penn State closed the quarter with a 15-2 surge to take a 65-52 lead over Nebraska into the final quarter. NU was never able to recover, falling to 5-14 overall and 1-6 in the Big Ten. Penn State improved to 13-6 overall and 3-4 in the Big Ten, while moving to 10-1 at home.

In addition to the double-double from Shepard and the career-high from Cascio Jensen, the Huskers got nine points from Nicea Eliely despite battling second-half foul trouble. Jasmine Cincore pitched in seven points, while Hannah Whitish added six points on a pair of threes while contributing four assists.

The Huskers were whistled for a season-high 27 fouls in the game, including early foul trouble for Whitish, third-quarter foul trouble for Eliely and Shepard fouling out after being whistled for a pair of fouls, including a flagrant on free throw box out with 10.4 seconds left in the third quarter. Overall, 51 fouls were called in the game – far and away the most in a game the Huskers played this season. On Sunday at Illinois, the Huskers and Fighting Illini were whistled for a combined 27 fouls, including just 11 by Nebraska.

Teniya Page led four Lady Lions in double figures with 18 points, while Jaida Travascio-Green added 10, including key back-to-back threes late in the third quarter to help the Lady Lions create separation. Lindsey Spann and Peyton Whitted, both former starters for PSU, scored 14 points apiece off the bench.

As a team, Penn State hit 29-of-63 field goals, including 7-of-20 threes and 21-of-29 free throws. The Lady Lions also outrebounded Nebraska, 40-35, and won the turnover battle 16-10.

Nebraska hit 40.4 percent (21-52) of its shots, including 7-of-16 threes, while hitting 20-of-30 free throws. The Huskers hit 15-of-20 free throws before going 5-of-10 down the stretch. Nebraska also went through a nearly six-minute span between three-point field goals from Cascio Jensen to tie the score at 50 in the third quarter and Eliely in the fourth. Eliely’s three cut the PSU margin briefly to 65-55.

The Huskers trailed 41-36 at the half despite a career-high 10 first-half points from Rylie Cascio Jensen. The freshman guard from Fremont stepped up in place of fellow freshman Whitish, who was whistled for two quick fouls. Cascio Jensen’s previous career high was six points, but hit 2-of-3 shots from the field, including a three-pointer, and knocked down all five of her first-half free throw attempts.

Shepard added 10 first-half points, but had what at first appeared to be a buzzer-beating layup to end the half wiped off the scoreboard after a video review. Shepard added eight first-half rebounds, but went just 4-for-11 from the floor in the half.

Page led all first-half scorers with 14 points, while Whitted pitched in eight points on 4-of-4 shooting for the Lady Lions in the half. As a team, Penn State hit 15-of-31 shots, including 3-of-9 threes and 8-of-9 free throws. Penn State outrebounded Nebraska, 17-15, and won the first-half turnover battle, 9-7.

Nebraska answered with 13-of-28 first-half shooting, including 3-of-9 threes and 7-of-8 free throws.

The Huskers return to home Big Ten action on Sunday by battling Michigan. Tip-off between Nebraska and the Wolverines at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Sunday is set for 2 p.m. (CT) with tickets available now on Huskers.com.