All-American guard Asia Durr scored 25 points to lead the fifth-ranked Louisville women’s basketball team to an 85-68 victory against Nebraska on Thursday in Louisville, Kentucky, in a game played as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
Nebraska (2-4) was within eight points on a couple of occasions in the third quarter, but undefeated Louisville went on a run at the end of the third quarter, then outscored the Huskers 23-18 in the fourth quarter.
The start of the game was back-and-forth, and Nebraska briefly led, 11-10.
But Nebraska never gave itself a chance for the major upset because the Huskers had 23 turnovers in the game.
“We didn’t handle the pressure, and it’s disappointing because we know that we’re better than that,” Nebraska coach Amy Williams said in a radio interview. “With 23 turnovers you just don’t give yourself a chance to compete in a game like this, and against a team like this. We just know it’s too many turnovers, and several that led immediately to second-chance points for them.”
Louisville scored 26 points off of turnovers, which was 11 more than Nebraska had in that category.
Forward Sam Fuehring added 14 points and 10 rebounds for Louisville, and Arica Carter scored 12 points.
Louisville, coached by former Nebraska assistant coach Jeff Walz, returned four starters from an NCAA Final Four team. Walz got a technical foul in the second half on Thursday.
The Cardinals made seven three pointers and shot 51 percent from the field for the game.
Senior forward Maddie Simon led the Huskers with 16 points, including shooting 2-of-4 on three-pointers. Hannah Whitish had 15 points. Freshman guard Sam Haiby scored 12, but also had five turnovers.
Kate Cain had 10 rebounds and three blocked shots. But the Nebraska center only attempted three field goals, and scored five points.
In the first half Nebraska didn’t allow Louisville to go on big scoring runs. But in the second half the defense wasn’t as good, and Louisville cashed in off Nebraska turnovers.
“We can play at a high level if we do find a way to improve in a few areas,” Williams said.
Nebraska’s next game is Sunday against Creighton (1-4) in Omaha. That will be the end of five consecutive road games for the Huskers.
— Brent C. Wagner