Huskers head to Omaha for clash with Creighton

Published: Dec. 13, 2020 at 12:01 PM CST
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Nebraska women’s basketball team hits the road for the first time in 2020-21 when the Huskers travel to Omaha to collide with Creighton on Monday. Tip-off in the annual showdown between the Big Red and the Bluejays is set for 5 p.m. (CT) with live statewide television coverage by NET. Live video is also available through the NET App and at through the Live & On Demand link. Larry Punteney and Brenda VanLengen will provide the TV call of the game.

Live radio will be available with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch on the call across the Husker Sports Network stations, the Huskers App and on

Nebraska improved to 3-0 on the season by opening Big Ten play with a 78-72 victory over Illinois at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Thursday night. Junior guard Sam Haiby led the Huskers with a career-high 33 points, including 21 in the second half, to fuel a Nebraska rally from a five-point deficit midway through the fourth quarter. She added nine rebounds and four assists in the game, while scoring six points during a decisive 13-0 Husker run over a three-minute span in the fourth quarter.

Haiby, a 5-9 guard from Moorhead, Minn., enters the Creighton game as Nebraska’s season leader in scoring (17.7 ppg), rebounding (9.3 rpg) and assists (4.7 apg).

Sophomore Isabelle Bourne continued to build on her strong start to the season by producing the first 20-point performance of her career against the Fighting Illini. The 6-2 forward from Canberra, Australia, poured in a career-high 21 points while adding eight rebounds against Illinois and enters the Creighton game averaging 14.7 points and 6.7 rebounds.

Junior transfer Bella Cravens added a career high of her own against the Illini by pulling down 16 rebounds in her first Nebraska start. The 6-3 forward from Laie, Hawaii, grabbed 12 boards in the second half to help the Huskers post a plus-12 rebound margin against Illinois on the night. Cravens is averaging 4.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.3 blocks through her first three games as a Husker.

Redshirt sophomore Ashley Scoggin has started all three games to open her Husker career, including a career-high 16 points on 4-of-5 three-point shooting in a 64-51 win over Idaho State. Two days later, the Bengals ran to a 65-50 win at Kansas State (Dec. 8). The Wildcats went on to defeat No. 22 South Dakota State 62-53 (Dec. 10). The Jacks beat Creighton 66-47 (Nov. 30).

Three-time Lisa Leslie Award candidate Kate Cain anchors the Husker starting five. The 6-5 center from Middletown, N.Y., is Nebraska’s career block leader (291) and is poised to become just the sixth player in Big Ten history with 300 career blocked shots.

Scouting Creighton

Coach Jim Flanery brings Creighton into Monday’s game against Nebraska with a 1-3 record after running to an 88-41 win at Butler in CU’s BIG EAST opener on Dec. 6.

Freshman Morgan Maly led the Jays with 16 points on 5-of-6 shooting, including a trio of three-pointers, in just 13 minutes off the bench against the Bulldogs. Maly led five Bluejays in double figures, as Creighton connected on 15-of-34 three-pointers in the game.

Prior to the win over Butler, Creighton got off to an 0-3 start against traditionally strong regional opponents, including a 75-62 loss to Drake (Nov. 25) in CU’s only home game. The Jays also suffered a 55-52 loss at Northern Iowa (Nov. 28) and a 66-47 loss at nationally ranked South Dakota State (Nov. 30).

The Jays have been led by 5-9 senior guard Temi Carda, who is averaging 14.0 points, 5.3 rebounds and 3.0 assists. Carda, who is averaging nearly 35 minutes per game, is the only Jay averaging more than 26 minutes played per contest. Carda has hit 6-of-16 threes (.375) and is 12-of-13 (.923) at the free throw line. Carda was an honorable-mention All-BIG EAST pick last season after averaging 12.9 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists.

Fellow 5-9 senior guard Tatum Rembao joined Carda in the starting five after missing the first three games this season. Rembao scored 10 points and hit a pair of threes in the win over Butler. Last season, Rembao started all 22 games she played and averaged 10.0 points per game while hitting 37.7 percent (26-69) of her threes, despite missing eight games with a midseason leg injury.

Carda and Rembao are the only seniors on the 14-player Creighton roster. Junior Rachael Saunders, a 5-9 guard has added 9.0 points and 2.8 rebounds while making all four starts. Saunders averaged 6.6 points and 5.1 rebounds while making 10 starts and playing in 24 games a year ago.

Fellow junior Chloe Dworak started Creighton’s first three games in place of Rembao and has averaged 5.0 points and 2.5 rebounds. The 5-6 guard out of Lincoln Christian High School has played in 52 games in her Creighton career.

Juniors Payton Brotzki (2.0 ppg, 1.8 rpg) and Gracey Griglione (1.0 ppg, 1.0 rpg) have played key roles for Creighton. Last year, Griglione started all 30 games (2.7 ppg, 1.6 rpg), while Brotzki has played in 61 career games.

Sophomores Carly Bachelor (2.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg) and Mykel Parham (1.3 ppg, 3.0 rpg) have provided size in Creighton’s starting five early this season. The 6-2 Parham is the tallest player on the CU roster, while Bachelor leads the Jays in rebounding.

Freshman Emma Ronsiek has provided big contributions off the bench for the Jays early in her career. The 6-1 forward out of Sioux Falls O’Gorman High School ranks second on the team in scoring (10.3 ppg) and third in rebounding (4.8 rpg). She also leads CU by hitting 7-of-15 threes. Ronsiek was the South Dakota Gatorade High School Player of the Year in 2019-20.

Maly, a 6-1 All-Nebraska and Super-State selection from Crete, has added 6.0 points per game, while fellow freshman Molly Mogensen has also pitched in 6.0 points per game.

As a team, Creighton continues to love the three, connecting on an average of 9-of-25 threes per game early this season (36-110, .327). In the win over Butler, CU buried 15-of-34 long-range attempts, outscoring Butler 45-9 from beyond the arc.

Overall, the Jays are shooting just 35.3 percent (84-238) from the field. CU is outstanding at the stripe, connecting on 81.8 percent (45-55) of its free throws. Despite being a bit undersized, Creighton has held its own on the glass (35.0-37.5). The Jays own a plus-2.3 turnover margin.

Nebraska vs. Creighton Series History

Nebraska leads the all-time series with Creighton 30-15, but the Jays have won the last four meetings against the Huskers.

Last season, Creighton escaped from Lincoln with a 79-74 thanks to 26 points and 13 rebounds from departed senior Jaylyn Agnew, who hit 5-of-11 three-pointers. Temi Carda pitched in 18 points on 4-of-7 three-point shooting, while departed senior Olivia Elger added 18 including 3-of-5 threes. Tatum Rembao put four Jays in double figures with 11 points and a pair of triples.

As a team, Creighton connected on 14-of-32 three-pointers in the win, while Nebraska went just 3-of-16 from long range. Kate Cain led the Big Red with 18 points, seven rebounds and five blocks, while Sam Haiby added 17 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Isabelle Bourne is the only other current Husker who played in last season’s game, adding seven points and three rebounds.

During Creighton’s four-game winning streak in the series, the Jays are 45-of-118 (.381) from three-point range, while Nebraska is just 12-of-66 (.182). CU is averaging 11.3 made threes per game during the streak, while NU is averaging 3.0.

Creighton has connected on double digit threes against Nebraska in four of the last six meetings, including a 15-of-38 effort on Dec. 18, 2016.

However, Nebraska’s lack of success from long range against Creighton is not limited to the last four games. In fact, Nebraska has not made more than five threes in a game against Creighton since a 75-67 Husker win in Omaha on Nov. 17, 2008 when the Big Red went 9-for-21. On the flip side, Creighton has made at least five threes against Nebraska since going 4-for-13 at the Civic Auditorium in Omaha on Dec. 3, 2000. Creighton won that game, 66-57, despite NU hitting 5-of-10 threes.

In the last 25 meetings combined, Nebraska has hit 79-of-291 (.271) for an average of just 3.2 made threes per game. Creighton has hit 180-of-550 (.327) for an average of 7.2 made threes in the same 25 games. Nebraska owns a 17-8 series edge during that span.

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