Huskers Celebrate Senior Night with Penn State
• The Nebraska women’s basketball team closes its regular-season home schedule by taking on Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Thursday. Tip-off between the Huskers (19-8, 10-4 Big Ten) and Lady Lions (15-12, 6-8 Big Ten) on Senior Night for Jasmine Cincore, Janay Morton and Emily Wood is set for 7 p.m. (CT).
• A live radio broadcast will be produced by the Husker Sports Network, with Matt Coatney and Jeff Griesch teaming up for their 17th season together on the call. The game will be carried for free on Huskers.com and over the air on B107.3 FM in Lincoln and ESPN 590 AM in Omaha. Free audio also can be found on the Huskers App and the TuneIn App.
• A live telecast will be provided by the Big Ten Network with Kevin Kugler and former Nebraska assistant coach Brenda VanLengen on the call.
• The Huskers will shoot for their 11th Big Ten victory of the season, which would secure a top-four seed in next week’s Big Ten Tournament. Nebraska, which could lock up its 17th 20-win season in school history, is also trying to stay in the hunt for the Big Ten regular-season title.
• Nebraska, which finished in a tie for last in the Big Ten last season at 3-13, enters the final week of the regular season in the midst of one of the nation’s top turnarounds at plus-12 overall in the win column, including plus-seven in the conference victory column.
• Overall, Nebraska will be shooting for its eighth top-100 RPI win of the season against a Penn State squad that entered the week at No. 83. The Huskers own five top-100 wins on the road, including three against top-35 RPI teams Iowa (19), Rutgers (25) and Minnesota (34).
• Nebraska is 18-5 with Maddie Simon on the court this season. Simon missed four games (Creighton, Buffalo, Coastal Carolina, Clemson) with a significant ankle sprain suffered in warm-ups before the game with Creighton (Nov. 19). Simon missed the rest of NU’s games in November and the Huskers went 1-3.
• The Huskers played without senior Janay Morton in the losses to Creighton and Buffalo while she recovered from offseason ankle surgery. Morton played just one minute in the loss to Washington State after aggravating her ankle, while NU’s leading scoring in non-conference play (Taylor Kissinger, 14.0 ppg) did not play at all in the loss to WSU because of a knee injury suffered late in the loss to Clemson.
• In the last six games, Kissinger is averaging 18.4 points, 8.6 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.7 blocks per 40 minutes, while Morton has added 18.2 points, 3.2 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.6 steals per 40.
Nebraska Cornhuskers (19-8, 10-4 Big Ten)
24 – Maddie Simon – 6-2 – Jr. – F – 10.3 ppg, 5.7 rpg
31 – Kate Cain – 6-5 – Fr. – C – 10.3 ppg, 6.9 rpg
3 – Hannah Whitish – 5-9 – So. – G – 12.8 ppg, 3.8 rpg
5 – Nicea Eliely – 6-1 – So. – G – 8.8 ppg, 4.0 rpg
34 – Jasmine Cincore – 5-10 – Sr. – F – 6.6 ppg, 4.0 rpg
Off the Bench
33 – Taylor Kissinger – 6-1 – Fr. – G – 10.7 ppg, 4.4 rpg
12 – Emily Wood – 5-5 – Sr. – G – 4.0 ppg, 1.7 rpg
13 – Janay Morton – 5-10 – Sr. – G – 4.6 ppg, 1.2 rpg
15 – Bria Stallworth – 5-6 – So. – G – 3.4 ppg, 1.5 rpg
14 – Grace Mitchell – 6-2 – So. – F – 2.3 ppg, 2.0 rpg
50 – Darrien Washington – 6-2 – Jr. – F – 1.4 ppg, 2.2 rpg
43 – Rachel Blackburn – 6-3 – So. – F – 1.4 ppg, 1.9 rpg
Head Coach: Amy Williams (Nebraska, 1998)
Second Season at Nebraska (26-30)
11th Season Overall (219-139)
Penn State Lady Lions (15-12, 6-8 Big Ten)
1 – Alisia Smith – 6-3 – Fr. – F – 4.8 ppg, 3.6 rpg
35 – De’Janae Boykin – 6-2 – So. – F – 6.1 ppg, 8.2 rpg
2 – Amari Carter – 5-8 – So. – G – 14.7 ppg, 3.7 rpg
11 – Teniya Page – 5-7 – Jr. – G – 18.4 ppg, 3.7 rpg
31 – Jaida Travascio-Green – 6-2 – So. – G – 12.1 ppg, 3.7 rpg
Off the Bench
4 – Siyeh Frazier – 5-9 – So. – G – 7.7 ppg, 3.1 rpg
5 – Kamaria McDaniel – 5-10 – Fr. – G – 4.8 ppg, 1.8 rpg
23 – Jaylen Williams – 6-3 – Jr. – F – 4.6 ppg, 5.1 rpg
24 – Sam Breen – 6-1 – Fr. – F – 1.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg
Head Coach: Coquese Washington (Notre Dame, 1992)
11th Season at Penn State (196-147)
11th Season Overall (196-147)
Scouting the Penn State Lady Lions
• Coach Coquese Washington brings her 11th Penn State team to Lincoln, as the Lady Lions enter the final week of the season with a 15-12 overall record and a 6-8 Big Ten mark.
• The Lady Lions have had plenty of time and rest to prepare for the Big Red, as Penn State last played at home against Northwestern on Valentine’s Day – a 67-59 victory over the Wildcats.
• Penn State is 1-6 on the road in Big Ten play with its lone victory coming in a 69-62 win at Wisconsin on Jan. 14. Overall, the Lady Lions are 4-10 away from home this season with their only weekday road win at Marshall (80-65) in Huntington, W.Va., in their first road game of the season on Nov. 15.
• The Lady Lions are 5-2 in the Big Ten at the Bryce Jordan Center with wins over Rutgers, Indiana, Michigan State, Northwestern and Illinois, and losses to Maryland (69-65) and Minnesota (91-71).
• A young Penn State team that does not feature a senior on its 12-player roster, is led by junior Teniya Page. The 5-7 guard is averaging 18.4 points and 3.7 rebounds while shooting 35.4 percent (29-82) from three-point range. Page also makes a living at the line where she is an 84.7 percent (116-137) shooter.
• Sophomore guards Amari Carter and Jaida Travascio-Green are the only Lady Lions to start all 27 games for Penn State this season.
• Carter, a 5-8 point guard, ranks second on the team in scoring at 14.7 points while leading the Lady Lions with 3.7 assists and 2.6 steals per game this season. Carter is also better than an 80 percent shooter at the line and has hit 33.3 percent (42-126) of her three-pointers.
• Travascio-Green, a long and athletic 6-2 wing, is Penn State’s most potent three-point threat. She has knocked down a team-best 67 threes (203 attempts) while shooting 33 percent from beyond the arc. She is shooting nearly 84 percent (47-56) at the stripe. She also ranks second on the team with 22 blocks while ranking third on the squad with 12.1 points per game.
• A third sophomore starter, De’Janae Boykin, anchors the Penn State post game. The 6-2 UConn transfer is averaging 6.1 points and a team-best 8.2 rebounds. However, she is shooting just 40.9 percent from the field and just 41.2 percent (21-51) from the free throw line.
• Freshman Alisia Smith made her first career start in the win over Northwestern. The 6-3 forward is averaging 4.8 points and 3.6 rebounds while shooting 55.8 percent from the field and 78.2 percent (43-55) at the line. However, she has just nine assists compared to 40 turnovers in 13.9 minutes per game.
• Jaylen Williams, a 6-3 junior forward, was a regular starter for the Lady Lions this season, averaging 4.6 points and 5.1 rebounds. Williams also leads the Lady Lions with 37 blocked shots on the year.
• Sophomore Siyeh Frazier adds more depth in the Penn State backcourt. The 5-9 guard contributes 7.7 points and 3.1 rebounds, while ranking second on the squad with 47 steals. Frazier is a talented penetrator and pull-up shooter, but she is just 3-for-11 from three-point range this season.
• Freshmen Kamaria McDaniel (4.8 ppg, 1.8 rpg) and Sam Breen (1.5 ppg, 2.0 rpg) round out Penn State’s nine regular contributors. McDaniel has played in every game and is shooting a solid 33.8 percent (24-71) from three-point range while knocking down 75 percent of her free throws.
• As a team, Penn State is averaging 70 points per game despite shooting just 39.9 percent from the field. The Lady Lions have hit 32.8 percent of their three-pointers and a strong 74.1 percent of their free throws. PSU is minus-2.5 boards per game, but plus-2.6 turnovers per game in a guard-oriented attack.
• On the defensive end, Penn State is surrendering 69.6 points per contest while opponents are shooting 42.5 percent from the field, including 34.9 percent from three-point range. In Big Ten play, the opposition is averaging 75.9 points and shooting a sizzling 46.9 percent from the field, including an incredible 43 percent from three-point range.
Nebraska vs. Penn State Series History
• Penn State leads the all-time series with Nebraska, 6-5, including an 86-69 pounding of the Huskers in University Park on Jan. 19, 2017.
• Last year’s Lady Lion win snapped Nebraska’s four-game winning streak in the series, which included an 87-69 victory over Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Feb. 2, 2016.
• Nebraska has won three straight games over Penn State at Pinnacle Bank Arena, including a 73-45 victory on Jan. 15, 2015, and a 94-74 win over the Lady Lions on Feb. 24, 2014.
• Penn State registered a victory in what was supposed to be Nebraska’s final regular-season home game at the Bob Devaney Sports Center on March 3, 2013. Maggie Lucas buried an opponent record eight three-pointers on her way to 34 points to lead No. 7 Penn State to an 82-67 win over No. 20 Nebraska.
• Overall, Nebraska is 3-2 in Lincoln against Penn State and 2-3 at University Park, including the Huskers’ first-ever Big Ten Conference victory (71-63) on Dec. 30, 2011 at the Bryce Jordan Center.
• Nebraska dropped an 83-64 decision to Penn State at the Surf and Slam Tournament in San Diego on Dec. 30, 2002.
• A win for Nebraska against Penn State would be the Huskers’ 20th victory of the season, which would be a plus-13-win improvement from last season (7).
• At 9-1 in true road games, Nebraska is one of only nine women’s teams in NCAA Division I (349 teams) with one or no losses in true road contests, joining UConn (11-0), Mississippi State (8-0), Mercer (13-0), Louisville (13-1), Baylor (8-1), Belmont (12-1), Gonzaga (11-1) and UAB (9-1).
• Kate Cain owns the Nebraska record for blocks in a season with 87, surpassing the previous mark held by Olympic bronze medalist Danielle Page (78, 2007-08). Cain has at least one blocked shot in all 27 games this season.
• Cain’s 87 blocks rank No. 5 in the nation while her 3.2 blocks per game rank eighth in the country through games Feb. 19. No Nebraska individual has ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a career, and only two Huskers (Danielle Page, 2.4 bpg, 2007-08; Catheryn Redmon, 2.5 bpg, 2010-11) have ever averaged 2.0 blocks per game in a single season.
• Nebraska freshman Taylor Kissinger has come off the bench in the first 14 Big Ten games. The 6-1 guard from Minden, Neb., is averaging 10.7 points per game on the year. Kissinger averaged a team-best 14.0 points per game over the first seven games this season as a starter before missing Nebraska’s final six non-conference contests with a knee injury.
• Kissinger (10.7 ppg) and Cain (10.3 ppg) have a chance to become just the second pair of Husker freshmen and the first since 1982-83 to each average double figures in the same season, joining Debra Powell (15.4 ppg) and Crystal Coleman (12.3 ppg).
• Kissinger needs five three-pointers to move into a tie for third on Nebraska’s freshman season three-point list with 51. Hannah Whitish is No. 2 on that list with 57 in 2016-17.
• Junior Maddie Simon (+6.2 ppg) is one of the Big Ten’s most improved players in 2017-18. Simon, a 6-2 forward, is averaging 10.3 points per game after averaging 4.1 points through all 29 games a year ago.
• Sophomore guard Hannah Whitish (44) owns the longest current streak of consecutive starts by a Husker. Nebraska’s second-longest streak is 26 games by freshman Kate Cain.
• Whitish is the only Husker to start all 27 games this season.
• Nebraska has featured the same starting lineup in 19 consecutive games (14-5 record).
• Whitish has posted at least one assist in 29 consecutive games, and has three or more assists in 25 games this season.
• Kate Cain has blocked at least one shot in each of the first 27 games of her career. She has 23 games with two or more blocks. • Cain has at least two rebounds every game this season.
• Maddie Simon has at least three rebounds in all 23 of her games this season.
• Taylor Kissinger has dished out an assist in 13 consecutive games off the bench.
• The Huskers have knocked down at least one three-pointer in 307 straight regular-season games dating back to a loss at UTEP on Dec. 20, 2008.
• Nebraska has hit at least two three-pointers in 186 consecutive games.