Lincoln, Neb. – The Nebraska baseball team (10-7, 2-0 Big Ten) completed a doubleheader sweep over Michigan State with a 5-2 win in Game 2 at Hawks Field on Friday evening.
As was the case in Game 1, the Huskers saw a strong outing from their starting pitcher, as senior lefty Nate Fisher went 7.1 innings and allowed only one run on five hits, while recording three strikeouts and no walks.
In Fisher’s last outing, he didn’t allow a hit in 8.0 innings at No. 21 Baylor on March 9. On Friday, the Spartans didn’t score until the eighth inning.
Nebraska pounced early with two runs in the bottom of the first inning. After each of the first two hitters flew out, Gunner Hellstrom reached on an error before Keegan Watson drew a walk. Jaxon Hallmark hit an infield single to load the bases. Colby Gomes smacked a two-RBI single to give the Huskers a lead they wouldn’t relinquish.
Gomes added an RBI in the fifth, when he doubled to drive in Hallmark with two outs. NU tacked on two runs in the sixth inning. NU had runners on second and third with one out before Aaron Palensky’s single up the middle brought both of them in.
Michigan State scored two runs in the top of the eighth and threatened to cut into NU’s lead when the Spartans loaded the bases in the top of the ninth. However, Gomes took to the mound and earned his team-best fourth save of 2019 when he threw the final 1.0 inning. In addition to Fisher and Gomes, Robbie Palkert made a pitching appearance, throwing 0.2 inning of relief.
During the first game of Friday’s doubleheader, Nebraska won a 4-1 decision over Michigan State behind a complete game from senior Matt Waldron.
The series finale between Nebraska and Michigan State is scheduled for Sunday at 1:05 p.m. (CT).
The Nebraska men’s basketball team erased an early 12-point deficit and behind a big second half, the Huskers posted their first postseason victory in 11 years Wednesday night with an 80-76 win over Butler in a first-round NIT matchup at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
The Huskers (19-16) trailed midway through the second half before a game-changing 14-2 run turned a one-point deficit into a 12-point lead. Nebraska then made enough plays down the stretch, winning by four points after Butler cut the lead to one with 1:31 remaining.
With the win – Nebraska first postseason victory since a 67-48 win over Charlotte in the first round of the 2008 NIT – the Huskers advanced to the second round to face TCU in Fort Worth, Texas Sunday night at 8:30 p.m. (CT). Nebraska improved to 16-1 all-time at home in the NIT, and the Huskers are 3-0 against Big East teams this season. Butler, which was making its 13th postseason appearance in the last 14 years, saw its season end with a 16-17 record.
Isaiah Roby paced the Huskers with a career-high 28 points, and he just missed a double-double after grabbing a game-high eight rebounds. James Palmer added 23 points, while Glynn Watson Jr. scored 17 points, as Nebraska’s big three combined for 68 of NU’s 80 points. Tanner Borchardt and Johnny Trueblood added six points each to account for Nebraska's other 12 points. The Huskers’ 80 points were their most in eight postseason games, dating back to the 2004 NIT, when Nebraska scored 83 points in a one-point loss at Hawaii.
Sean McDermott had 14 points for Butler, which had four players in double figures. Paul Jorgensen chipped in 12 points, while Jordan Tucker and Aaron Thompson each scored 11 points, with Thompson adding a career-high 12 assists for his first career double-double.
Butler scored 14 of the game’s first 16 points to jump out to a 12-point lead less than five minutes into the contest. But Nebraska responded with an immediate 7-0 run of its own. Roby scored all seven points during the spurt, as the junior scored Nebraska’s first 11 points of the game.
Watson became the first Husker other than Roby to score when he knocked down a 3-pointer at the 9:02 mark to pull Nebraska within five. The 3-pointer ignited a 6-0 Husker run that trimmed the lead to two. A 5-0 Nebraska run two minutes later tied the game at 22-all, before Butler came right back with five straight points. But Palmer scored seven straight points to give Nebraska its first lead at 29-27 with one minute left in the half, and the Huskers took a one-point lead into the locker room.
Roby scored 17 points in the first half on 7-of-8 shooting from the field, while the rest of the Husker lineup was just 4-for-21 from the floor. Butler shot 44 percent in the first half, and the Bulldogs were 8-of-16 from the 3-point line.
Both teams came out on fire to start the second half, which saw eight lead changes in the first four minutes. Nebraska made its first six shots from the floor and used a 7-0 run to build a four-point lead. Butler answered with its own 7-0 run to regain the lead at 50-49 with 11:14 remaining, but the Bulldog’s would only lead once more.
Nebraska erased the Butler advantage with a 14-2 run, capped by a string of 10 consecutive points that put the Huskers up 64-53 with 6:26 to play. The Bulldogs pulled to within six two minutes later on back-to-back 3-pointers from McDermott. Butler continued to chip away and used an 8-2 run to pull within one at 71-70 with 1:31 remaining. But Nebraska scored seven of the next nine points and the Huskers hit all four of their free throws in the final minute, finishing 17-of-20 from the line in the second half.
The Huskers were 15-of-23 from the field in the second half, shooting a blistering 65.2 percent. Palmer (15), Watson (11) and Roby (11) each scored in double figures in the second half, while Trueblood had all six of his career-high six points in the final 20 minutes.
The Huskers will take on TCU, an 82-69 win over Sam Houston State, in the second round Sunday evening at 8:30 p.m. The game will be televised on the Husker Sports Network and carried on ESPNU.
Lincoln, Neb. – The Nebraska baseball team (8-7) led 7-0 after three innings and never looked back in a 12-3 win over Air Force at Hawks Field on Wednesday afternoon. With the win, Nebraska earns a two-game sweep against the Falcons after a 7-6 win on Tuesday.
Freshman Kyle Perry, making his second start of the season, struck out a career-high nine batters in 4.0 innings to set the tone for the Big Red. He gave up only one run and one walk. NU saw relief appearances from Byron Hood, Ethan Frazier (3.0 innings), Tyler Martin (1.0) and Jaxon Hallmark (1.0).
Junior Mojo Hagge paced the Husker offense with a three-hit performance that included a career-high four RBIs. Alex Henwood, playing for the first time in nine games, tallied two hits. Freshman Cam Chick went 2-for-3 to help NU produce 11 hits as a team. Keegan Watson hit his second home run against Air Force on Wednesday after also blasting one on Tuesday.
In the top of the first, NU scratched out three runs. After back-to-back walks to open the game, Mojo Hagge singled to load the bases. Aaron Palensky drew a walk to bring in Nebraska’s first run. Angelo Altavilla scored on a double play before an error brought Hagge in.
After a scoreless second frame, the Huskers added four runs in the bottom of the third. Colby Gomes laced an RBI double after Gunner Hellstrom drew a leadoff walk. Henwood’s RBI double then scored Gomes. The next two batters walked before Hagge hit a two-RBI single up the middle.
Air Force scored its first run of the game in the fourth inning and added one run in the top of the sixth, but NU tallied three runs in the bottom of the sixth. Watson smashed a solo home run before Henwood walked and Chick singled. Altavilla doubled to bring in one run before Hagge’s groundout added another run for the Big Red.
Nebraska tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the eighth. Mike Addante drew a leadoff walk before Chick singled to put runners at the corners. Altavilla’s sacrifice fly drove in one run. Hagge’s double drive in a second run for the Huskers.
The Huskers begin conference play this weekend when they host Michigan State for a three-game series at Hawks Field. The games are set for Friday (6:35 p.m.), Saturday (2:05 p.m.) and Sunday (1:05 p.m.).
Nebraska volleyball student-athlete Mikaela Foecke has been named a finalist for the prestigious AAU James E. Sullivan Award, the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) announced Monday.
The AAU Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930 to the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States. Representatives from the AAU created the Sullivan Award with the intent to recognize amateur contributions and achievements from non-professional athletes across the country. Foecke was also a finalist for the award in 2016, and this marks the fourth time in the last five years Nebraska volleyball has had a finalist for the AAU Sullivan Award. Foecke will go to New York City for the ceremony, which will take place Tuesday, April 16 at the New York Athletic Club.
Fan voting is open to the public at https://aausports.wyng.com/
"I am so proud to be able to represent Nebraska volleyball at the AAU Sullivan Award ceremony for a second time," Foecke said. "Once again, it is so humbling to be included in a group of such amazing athletes from around the country. This wouldn't be possible without the support from my family, teammates, coaches, and of course, Husker Nation. I want to thank everyone for voting for me and supporting me, and thank you to the AAU Sullivan Award committee for the honor of being recognized as a finalist for the award."
Foecke concluded her illustrious Husker career in 2018 with AVCA First-Team All-America honors after leading the team with 3.86 kills per set and 2.65 digs per set, along with a team-high 46 service aces. She finished her Husker career with a 21-2 record in her NCAA Tournament career after a runner-up finish in 2018, playing in more sets and matches and winning more NCAA Tournament matches than any player in Husker history. She went 52-3 in her career during the months of November and December and was an NCAA Championship All-Tournament selection for the third time in her career after a career-high 27 kills on .296 hitting with 11 digs in the NCAA Championship match against Stanford. She posted double-doubles in her last four NCAA Tournament matches to bring her season total to 17 and was named most valuable player of the Minneapolis Regional after 16 kills and 13 digs against No. 14 Oregon and 14 kills and 10 digs against No. 10 Kentucky.
Foecke was a unanimous All-Big Ten selection for the second straight season and ended her career at No. 3 on NU's career kills chart with 1,684, the second-highest total in the rally-scoring era. Foecke won the Senior CLASS Award, given annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in Division I volleyball with notable achievements in four areas of excellence: classroom, community, character and competition.
A team captain and Nebraska volleyball's representative on the Nebraska Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Foecke has shown exemplary character throughout her Husker career. A three-time Tom Osborne Citizenship Team member and a Diversity & Inclusion Summit leader, Foecke has also remained committed to community outreach, helping the Husker volleyball program earn the Nebraska's Life Skills Award through her work with events and organizations such as One Shirt One Body, Uplifting Athletes, People's City Mission, Husker Heroes, Make-a-Wish and more.
Lincoln – The Nebraska men’s basketball program will make its second straight postseason appearance, as the Huskers were selected for the 2019 National Invitational Tournament (NIT) Sunday evening.
Nebraska, which enters the postseason with an 18-16 record, is the No. 4 seed and will take on No. 5 seed Butler (16-16), on Wednesday, March 20 at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Tipoff is set for 8 p.m. (central) and the game will be televised on ESPN2 and carried on the Husker Sports Network.
“We are excited to have our season continue, especially for our seniors who wanted to return to postseason play,” Nebraska Coach Tim Miles said. “We had our share of struggles at times, but I think the way we have played over the final two weeks of the season is a testament to our players and the character they have. I believe that our performance at the Big Ten Tournament is a good momentum boost heading into the postseason, and showed a team that wanted to keep playing.
“We have been tested against a schedule that is in the top five nationally in Kenpom, including 25 games against the top two quadrants in the NET, and we are looking forward to the postseason challenge.”
Butler tied for eighth in the Big East with a 7-11 mark and features guard Kamar Baldwin, who was a second-team All-Big East selection this season. Baldwin averaged 17.2 points, 5.0 rebounds and 3.2 rebounds per game.
The 2019 NIT is the 26th postseason appearance in school history and 19th time NU has been selected for the NIT. The Huskers are 23-17 all-time in the NIT, including a championship in the 1996 NIT and semifinal appearances in 1983 and 1987.
NIT First-round tickets are on sale now by visiting huskers.com/tickets and by calling the NU Athletic Ticket Office at 800-8-BIGRED beginning at 8 a.m. on Monday morning. Premium seat holders (courtside, suites and loges) should be able to park in their normal spots for the first-round game. Season-ticket holders will not have their parking for NIT games. Parking for the first-round game will be available on a first-come, first-served basis from Park N’ Go (http://parkandgo.org/) beginning at 9 a.m. on Monday.
Chicago – University of Nebraska guard James Palmer Jr. (Upper Marlboro, Md.) was one of five players named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team Sunday evening. Palmer led the Huskers to the quarterfinals, averaging 24.3 points, 3.0 rebounds, and 2.3 steals per game, as he played all 120 minutes of NU’s three contests. Palmer tied a career high with 34 points in the first-round win over Rutgers, including a school-record 27 points in the second half alone. His 34 points was one off the Big Ten Tournament record, as Nebraska rallied from an eight-point deficit.
The senior guard carried the Huskers to a win over No. 21 Maryland with 24 points on 8-of-13 shooting, five rebounds and three assists before finishing with 15 points and four steals in the loss against No. 19 Wisconsin on Friday. Palmer is the first Husker named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team since Shavon Shields in 2016.
2019 Big Ten All-Tournament Team
Cassius Winston – Michigan State (Most Outstanding Player)
James Palmer Jr. - Nebraska
Ignas Brazdeikis – Michigan
Zavier Simpson – Michigan
Jordan Murphy - Minnesota
The Nebraska men’s basketball team rallied from a 13-point deficit to lead No. 19 Wisconsin with less than 10 minutes to play, but the Huskers fell just short down the stretch in a 66-62 loss to the Badgers Friday afternoon in the quarterfinals of the Big Ten Tournament.
The Huskers trailed by 13 with less than four minutes remaining in the first half, but closed the half on an 8-0 run to pull within five at the break. The Huskers fought all the way back to grab a 46-45 lead midway through the second half. Wisconsin regained the lead, but Nebraska trailed by just two with less than a minute to play before the Badgers made a clutch 3-pointer and hit 6-of-7 free throws down the stretch to hold on for the win.
Nebraska (18-16) played only six players in the game, with James Palmer Jr., Isaiah Roby and Glynn Watson Jr.playing all 40 minutes. Watson scored a game-high 23 points and grabbed six rebounds, while Palmer added 15 points and four steals and Roby chipped in 13 points and four blocks. That trio combined for 51 of Nebraska’s 62 points, but all six Huskers who played scored, with Thorir Thorbjarnarson contributing five points, Johnny Truebloodscoring four points and Tanner Borchardt making his only shot to finish with two points.
Wisconsin was led by four players in double figures. Khalil Iverson and Nate Reuevers each scored 14 points, while Brad Davison and Aleem Ford had 11 points each. The Badgers (23-9) advanced to Saturday’s semifinal to face fifth-ranked Michigan State, the tournament’s No. 1 seed.
Wisconsin scored the first eight points of the game and made five of its first six shots to build an early 10-2 advantage. Nebraska scored the next four points before Wisconsin used a pair of big possessions to fuel an 11-2 run and take a 13-point lead at the 12-minute mark. A Roby follow-up dunk was wiped away due to a controversial goal-tending call and the Nebraska bench received a technical foul for arguing the call. Wisconsin made the two technical foul shots and then Ford hit a 3-pointer to cap a five-point possession. The next trip down the court, Ford made another three and was fouled, hitting the free throw to complete a four-point play.
Trailing 21-8, Watson answered with a 3-pointer to spark a 10-2 run that trimmed the Badger lead to five midway through the period. The Huskers pulled within four before going scoreless for more than four minutes, during which time Wisconsin scored nine straight points to build a 34-21 lead with at the 3:27 mark. Watson then scored the final eight points of the half to pull Nebraska within 34-29 at the break. Watson scored 13 of NU’s final 21 points in the half.
Wisconsin shot 57 percent in the first half, but the Huskers did force nine turnovers against a Badger squad that averages fewer than 10 turnovers per game.
In the second half, Roby scored five straight points to cut the lead to two, but Wisconsin answered with a 3-pointer. Nebraska pulled back within two on a Watson three that made it 43-41 with 14:15 to play. After the Huskers missed four opportunities to tie or take the lead, the Badgers broke a three-minute scoring drought with a putback. But Thorbjarnarson answered with a 3-pointer and Palmer added a layup to put Nebraska on top 46-45 with 10 minutes remaining.
After taking the lead, Nebraska missed its next eight shots and went nearly five minutes without scoring. Wisconsin took advantage with a 7-0 run to take a 52-46 lead at the 7:13 mark. Roby broke the Huskers’ scoring drought with a pair of free throws and Watson scored five points in 33 seconds to pull Nebraska back within two with four minutes to play.
A Palmer steal and Trueblood layup kept Nebraska within two at the three-minute mark. Neither team scored over the next two minutes, as Wisconsin took a timeout leading 57-55 with 58 seconds remaining. D’Mitrik Trice drilled a clutch 3-pointer following the timeout and Wisconsin knocked down 6-of-7 free throws in the final 40 seconds to hang on for the win.
Nebraska Post-Game Notes
- Today’s game against No. 19 Wisconsin marked Nebraska’s 11th game this season against a ranked opponent, the most games the Huskers have ever played against ranked teams in one season
- Nebraska’s 2-1 finish at the Big Ten Tournament tied for the best mark every by the No. 13 seed.
- The Huskers forced Wisconsin into a season-high-tying 17 turnovers.
- Glynn Watson Jr. became Nebraska’s all-time leader in games played by appearing in his 132nd game today. Watson had been tied with Cookie Belcher, who played in 131 games from 1997 to 2001. Watson also started the 111th game of his career against Wisconsin, tying Dave Hoppen (1983-86) for the third-most starts in program history.
- Watson scored a game-high 23 points, marking his fifth 20-point effort of the season.
- James Palmer Jr. scored 15 points. He finished the 2019 Big Ten Tournament with 73 points, posting the seventh-most points in a single Big Ten Tournament in the event’s history.
- Watson hit five 3-pointers against Wisconsin to move into the top five on Nebraska’s all-time chart with 179 career 3-pointers. He is tied with Erik Strickland (1993-96) for fifth place on that list.
- Palmer was 2-of-2 at the free throw line against the Badgers. His two free throws gave him 21 made free throws at the 2019 Big Ten Tournament, tying for the eighth-most in a single Big Ten Tournament in the event’s history. Palmer attempted 32 free throws, which ranks as the most in a single Big Ten Tournament, eclipsing the previous record of 29 by Ohio State’s Brent Darby in the 2003 event.
- Isaiah Roby blocked four shots in the game. He blocked 11 shots in Nebraska’s three games at the Big Ten Tournament, one shy of the most blocks in a single Big Ten Tournament. His three blocks also gave Roby a school-record 17 blocked shots in his conference tournament career, breaking the Nebraska record of Venson Hamilton, who had 15 blocks in his six career conference tournament games from 1996 to 1999.
- Despite playing three games in less than 48 hours – two of which were against top-25 opponents – Nebraska played only seven players in the entire Big Ten Tournament. Watson and Palmer both played all 120 minutes in Chicago, while Roby logged 116 minutes. Watson, Palmer and Roby each played all 40 minutes Friday against Wisconsin.
The Nebraska men's basketball team built a double-digit lead late in the first half, and the Huskers never trailed again in a 69-61 upset of No. 21 Maryland Thursday afternoon in a second-round Big Ten Tournament matchup at the United Center.
Nebraska (18-15) led for more than 33 minutes and trailed for just 2:19, advancing to Friday's quarterfinal matchup with No. 4 seed and 19th-ranked Wisconsin. Tipoff for Friday's game is set for approximately 2 p.m. (Central), or 25 minutes after the conclusion of the Michigan State-Ohio State quarterfinal, which begins at 11:30 a.m. (Central).
The Huskers held Maryland to 36 percent shooting and just 18 field goals, marking the Terrapins' fourth-worst shooting percentage of the season and second-fewest field goals. Nebraska also limited a talented Maryland frontcourt to just 22 points in the paint, and the Huskers recorded eight steals. Offensively, Nebraska got 58 points from its big three of James Palmer Jr., Glynn Watson Jr. and Isaiah Roby. Palmer hit 8-of-13 shots en route to a game-high 24 points, while Watson scored 19 points and Roby added 15 points, six rebounds and three blocks. But the victory was a true team effort, as the Huskers got two points and a game-high nine rebounds from Tanner Borchardt, a career-high five points and four rebounds from Johnny Trueblood and four points, four rebounds and a career-high five steals from Thorir Thorbjarnarson.
Anthony Cowan led Maryland (22-10) with 18 points, while Darryl Morsell chipped in 14 points and Eric Ayala scored 12 points. Nebraska held first-team All-Big Ten pick Bruno Fernando to a season-low three points in 35 minutes.
Nebraska overcame a slow shooting start to put together a strong first half on both ends on its way to a 32-20 halftime lead. After missing its first six shots of the game, the Huskers went 11-of-18 the rest of the half, including hitting seven of their final nine shots. Defensively, Nebraska limited Maryland to 29 percent shooting in the first half and allowed just two field goals over the final nine minutes.
The Huskers went more than four minutes without a basket to open the game, but led 7-5 at the 14-minute mark after Watson scored five straight points. The lead then changed hands four times over the next two minutes before a 5-0 run put Nebraska ahead by four and Maryland responded with four straight points to tie the game at 14. After Maryland pulled even, Nebraska used a 13-2 run over the next six mix minutes to build a double-digit lead. The run began with six straight points and after a Maryland basket, the Huskers rattled off seven consecutive points. Nebraska pushed the lead to as many as 13, before a Watson jumper with 14 seconds left sent the Huskers into the locker room with a 12-point advantage.
Nebraska stretched the lead to 14 when Roby hit a 3-pointer less than a minute into the second half. But the Huskers missed their next 10 shots while going more than five minutes without scoring, and Maryland took advantage with nine straight points to pull within five at 35-30. That would be as close as the Terrapins would get the rest of the game, as Nebraska made 12 of its final 19 shots from that point. Nebraska immediately answered Maryland's 9-0 run with nine straight points of its own over the next two minutes to push the lead back to 14 with 11:50 remaining.
The Huskers had chances to extend their lead as Maryland had a six-minute stretch without a field goal, but Nebraska could not push the lead above 14. The Terrapins then scored five straight points in 14 seconds to cut the lead to nine, but the Huskers came back with five straight points of their own to build a 51-37 advantage with eight minutes remaining. Nebraska maintained at least a 10-point advantage until Maryland scored five straight points to cut the lead to 58-50 with four minutes to play. The lead was down to six until Trueblood grabbed an offensive rebound to keep a Husker possession alive, and Palmer drilled a 3-pointer to push the lead back to nine with 1:29 remaining. Nebraska had another three-point possession its next trip down the court to stretch the lead to 10 and put the game away. The Huskers hit six of their final eight shots to seal the win.