Nebraska battled back from a 14-point second-half deficit to cut Purdue's lead to one with just under two minutes left, but the Boilermakers held off the Huskers 75-71 in the second round of the Big Ten Women's Basketball Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Thursday night.
With the loss, Nebraska ended its season with a 14-16 overall record after tying for sixth in the 14-team Big Ten Conference with a 9-9 record. Purdue improved to 19-14 overall and will advance to the tournament quarterfinals on Friday to play No. 3 seed Rutgers in the final game of the day.
Nebraska trailed 50-36 midway through the third quarter and 60-47 at the end of three quarters, before shooting their way back into the game with five three-pointers in the final period.
Sophomore Taylor Kissinger buried a pair of threes in the final period and five of Nebraska's 11 threes in the game. Her final three cut Purdue's lead to 69-65 with 2:42 left, before junior Hannah Whitish buried her third three of the game with 1:56 left to trim the margin to 69-68 - the closest it had been since the final minute of the first quarter.
But Purdue answered with back-to-back baskets from Dominique Oden and Ae'Rianna Harris to push the lead back to five at 73-68 with 47 seconds left to close out the win. Oden finished with a game-high 20 points, while adding six rebounds, four assists and three steals.
Harris added 13 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks to help Purdue dominate the boards. Harris, who had five offensive rebounds, joined teammate Tamara Farquhar, who finished with a game-high 15 rebounds, including seven on the offensive end, to pair for 29 of Purdue's 44 boards on the night. The Boilermakers finished with 19 offensive rebounds.