Jan. 26, 2014
Final Stats | Photo Gallery
EVANSTON, Ill. -- It was an exciting game Sunday afternoon at Welsh-Ryan Arena as Northwestern upset No. 21/18 Nebraska 63-59. The game featured eight ties and 14 lead changes with the Wildcats prevailing down the stretch for their third win over a ranked opponent this year as they also took down No. 25 DePaul on Dec. 1 and edged No. 20 Purdue on Jan. 9.
Nia Coffey led all scorers with 22 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for her sixth double-double of the season. Christen Inman added 12 and Ashley Deary chipped in 10 points. Maggie Lyon scored a key layup with 1:21 left in the game to break the eighth and final tie, putting NU ahead for good.
The Wildcats did a good job of containing Nebraska's leading scorer heading into the game, Jordan Hooper. She had 11 points in the first half and finished with 11 for the game. Tear'a Laudermill led the Huskers with 18 points.
Northwestern jumped out to an 11-6 lead following a 3-pointer by Lauren Douglas, who was making her second start of the season. Nebraska relied on shots from long-range early, going 2-of-6 from the field as five of those field goal attempts were from behind the 3-point line.
The Huskers then took advantage of an 8-2 run to go ahead 14-13, but the Wildcats bounced right back with four-straight points by Coffey to take the 17-14 lead. At that point in the game, Coffey had eight of NU's 17 points. After Nebraska went back ahead for the fifth lead change of the game, Coffey continued to score and make plays, taking it coast-to-coast for another bucket to reach double figures for the 17th time this season and put NU within four (25-21) with 7:14 left in the half.
Nebraska led by as many as seven (30-23) late in the frame but the Wildcats utilized an 11-4 run to end the half and tie things up at 34-34 going into the break. La'Terria Taylor played solid minutes subbing for Deary at the point guard position and helped on the NU run, scoring a three-point play, putting NU within four. Coffey drained two free throws to cut the lead to two and then Lyon gave NU the brief one-point lead, scoring a 3-pointer with under a minute left. Nebraska went 1-of-2 from the charity stripe just before halftime to tie things up.
Coffey led all scorers with 14 points in the first half while Douglas chipped in six. NU had the 14-8 advantage on points in the paint and 8-0 clip on fast break points. Hooper's 11 points led Nebraska while two of the Huskers' starters, Emily Cady and Rachel Theriot, each had three fouls in the first half.
Northwestern kept its momentum going in the second half, scoring the first four points. Nebraska then responded with five-straight points of its own before Deary drained a 3-pointer for the eighth lead change of the game, putting the score at 41-39 with 15:32 to play.
The game stayed tight for the ensuing minutes with a few more lead changes and ties and then both teams went scoreless for more than three minutes until Coffey made 1-of-2 free throws to put the score at 52-51 in favor of the Wildcats, marking the 12th lead change of the game.
Nebraska then drained two free throws and Cady added a bucket to go up three (55-52) with 3:11 remaining. NU scored the next five points off two by Coffey and a clutch 3-pointer by Deary, giving NU the two-point cushion at 57-55 with 1:58 remaining.
A bucket by Cady tied things up for the final time at 57-57. Lyon's layup and another key 3-pointer by Inman gave NU a comfortable 62-57 lead. After two free throws by Laudermill with seven seconds left put Nebraska within three, Inman drained one final free throw with five seconds left to ice the 63-59 Northwestern win.
With the win, the Wildcats improve to 11-2 at home this year.
Northwestern returns to action Thursday, Jan. 30 playing at Indiana. Tip is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT at Assembly Hall in Bloomington, Ind.
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