Despite a career-high seven 3-pointers from Ray Gallegos, Nebraska fell to Iowa, 74-60, Saturday afternoon at Carver-Hawkeye Arena.
Gallegos led all players with 22 points, hitting 7-of-14 from long range en route to his sixth 20-point effort of the season, but it was not enough, as Iowa (20-11, 9-9 Big Ten) shot 57.1 percent and put four players in double figures to lock up the No. 6 seed in next week’s Big Ten Tournament in Chicago.
The Huskers (14-17, 5-13 Big Ten) used an 11-3 run to whittle a 10-point deficit to 46-44 after a Dylan Talley basket with 14:21 left, but went ice cold from the floor, going nearly eight and half minutes without a bucket, as the Hawkeyes went on a decisive 17-0 run to take a 63-44 lead after two straight baskets by Adam Woodbury.
Aaron White led the Hawkeyes with 19 points, while Woodbury added 12 points on 6-of-6 shooting, as Iowa shot 72.7 percent in the final 20 minutes.
Nebraska went on one final run, as a Gallegos 3-pointer with 5:47 left started an 8-0 run which pulled the Huskers within 63-52 with 4:55 left after two Brandon Ubel free throws. Iowa would come back, as Anthony Clemmons hit a 3-point play to push the lead out to 14 and Iowa never led by less than 11 points in the final five minutes. Clemmons added 11 points in 23 minutes off the bench for the Hawkeyes. Melsahn Basabe was the fourth Iowa player in double figures, as he finished with 11 points and 13 rebounds, as Iowa had a 39-22 advantage on the glass.
Dylan Talley joined Gallegos in double figures with 11 points, while Brandon Ubel added nine points, seven rebounds and three assists.
Iowa got off to a roaring start, jumping out to a 10-1 lead in the first four minutes, highlighted by 3-pointers from White and Roy Devyn Marble before Nebraska got its footing. The Huskers trailed 16-8 before a Rivers basket and a Gallegos 3-pointer cut the lead to 16-13. Iowa would come right back, as a three-point play from Clemmons started a 6-2 spurt that gave Iowa an eight point lead and Iowa would take a nine-point lead into the break.
Nebraska was down 43-33 before the Huskers ran off nine straight points, including 3-pointers from Gallegos and Talley and a three-point play from Shavon Shields to pull within one at 43-42 before Iowa took control.
Gallegos’ seven 3-pointers were one off the school record of eight, and marked the fourth time this season he has hit at least six 3-pointers in a game.
The Huskers are the No. 10 seed for the Big Ten Tournament and will open tournament action Thursday night in Chicago at 5:30 p.m. (central). The game will be televised on ESPN2 and carried on the Husker Sports Network.