Huskers lose to Illinois on the road
CHAMPAIGN, IL (KOLN) - The Nebraska men’s basketball team held Illinois to just 17.2 percent from 3-point range in a 5-for-29 shooting performance but fell 72-56 to the Fighting Illini on the road Tuesday.
The Cornhuskers (10-13, 3-9) had two players score in double figures, led by Sam Griesel, who had 21 points and six rebounds. Keisei Tominaga added 11 points and three steals from the bench and Derrick Walker added eight points, six rebounds, and four assists.
The Nebraska offense was very productive from downtown, knocking down eight threes on 20 attempts. Tominaga was the most prolific shooter for the Cornhuskers, draining three treys in the contest.
Nebraska forced 13 Illinois turnovers. The Cornhuskers turned those takeaways into 19 points on the other end of the floor. Tominaga’s three steals led the way for Nebraska.
How It Happened
After falling behind 30-22, Nebraska went on a 5-0 run with 4:05 left in the first half, culminating in a bucket from C.J. Wilcher, to narrow its deficit to 30-27. The Cornhuskers continued to close the gap, cutting the Illinois lead to 38-37 by the end of the first half.
Illinois kept widening its lead after intermission, constructing a 48-41 advantage before Nebraska went on a 9-0 run, finished off by Tominaga’s three, to seize a 50-48 lead with 12:00 to go in the contest. Illinois re-asserted control, outscoring the Cornhuskers 24-6 the rest of the way to hand Nebraska the 72-56 loss. Nebraska shot well from three-point range in the half, hitting three shots from deep to score nine of its 19 points.
•Nebraska started three freshmen (Jamarques Lawrence, Denim Dawson and Sam Hoiberg) for the first time since Feb. 20, 2016. That night was the last of four straight games started by Glynn Watson Jr., Michael Jacobson and Jack McVeigh.
•Sam Hoiberg becomes the 11th different Husker to start a game this season, as Nebraska used its seventh different lineup of the season. Hoiberg becomes the third Husker freshman to start at least once this season.
•Prior to tonight, the last time that Nebraska had two Lincoln natives in the starting lineup was January 11, 2003, at Kansas (Jake Muhleisen and Andrew Drevo).
•Blaise Keita saw his first action since Jan. 12, as he missed NU’s last four games with an ankle injury. Before tonight, he has played just eight minutes since suffering the injury against Queens on Dec. 20 He finished with four rebounds in 11 minutes.
•Sam Griesel reached double figures for the 12th time this season and posted his second 20-point game of the season. It was his second 20-point game of the season and 15th of his career. It was his highest output since scoring 22 against Maine in the opener.
•Keisei Tominaga had 11 points off the bench, his 13th double-figure game and 9th off the bench this season.Tominaga also matched his career high with three steals
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