MINNEAPOLIS — In a true Sam Haiby fashion, she drove to the basket from the far corner, split two defenders, bounced the ball off the glass and drew the foul. Haiby’s three-point play tied the game 62-62 with less than four minutes to play.
Unfortunately for the Huskers, their scoring crashed to a halt as Minnesota ended the game on an 11-1 run en route to a 73-63 win Wednesday to sweep the season series.
The Huskers trailed a majority of the game, though they waged a comeback but didn’t hit a basket in the remaining four minutes of the contest.
Haiby had a team-high 22 points and six assists. Annika Stewart went 3 of 4 from behind the arc tallying 13 points. Haiby and Stewart were NU’s only scorers to reach double figures.
Isabelle Bourne, the reigning Big Ten player of the week, had seven points and eight rebounds after back-to-back double-doubles last week.
“(We) didn’t have much scoring in the paint out of Kate Cain or Issie Bourne,” coach Amy Williams said on the Huskers’ radio show. “The paint touches, post touches, that inside-outside attack that we really need to have the balanced scoring that we’re looking for just wasn’t there.”
Minnesota had 32 points in the paint compared to Nebraska’s 18. UM had four players scores in double digits. Klarke Sconiers and Gadiva Hubbard lead the team with 14 apiece.
“When you think about their bigs, they just really hurt us,” Williams said. “Kadi Sissoko, Sconiers, Kayla Mershon and Laura Bagwell Katalinich, they combined for 34 points. And when you compare that over to our bigs, it was really night and day difference.”
Cain, who averages 10 points a game, scored four.
Down 19-12 in the second period, Nebraska began to hit some shots. Back-to-back 3-pointers from Kendall Coley and Stewart pushed Nebraska in front 26-25. Stewart drained another 3-pointer with one minute left in the half.
Minnesota was on a four-minute scoring drought until Nebraska transfer Mershon made a layup, sending UM into halftime up 31-30.
The Gophers continued to dominate in the paint after the break. UM led 41-34 before the Huskers answered, tying the game 51-51 on Coley’s second 3 of the game.
Haiby scored nine in the fourth quarter to keep NU close, but it wasn’t enough.
Minnesota had 12 second-chance points and the Huskers had none. NU had six points off seven turnovers and Minnesota collected 18 points off Nebraska’s 10 turnovers.
“The one that just really sticks out like a sore thumb for me is points in the paint obviously and second-chance points,” Williams said.
The Huskers were without leading rebounder Bella Cravens for the second straight game due to an ankle injury.
The Huskers (11-10, 9-9 Big Ten) have upset four ranked opponents but fell to Minnesota (8-11, 7-10) twice this season.