Huskers Complete Big Ten Road Trip at Purdue
The Nebraska women’s basketball team wraps up a two-game Big Ten road swing through Indiana by battling the Purdue Boilermakers on Wednesday afternoon in West Lafayette. Tip-off between the Huskers (3-2, 1-1 Big Ten) and Boilermakers (4-2, 1-1 Big Ten) at Mackey Arena is set for 1 p.m. (CT).
Wednesday’s game is the only scheduled match-up between Nebraska and Purdue this season.
The Huskers slipped to 3-2 overall when they suffered their first Big Ten loss of the season at No. 15 Indiana on Sunday. In her first season as a starter, Isabelle Bourne, the 6-2 forward from Canberra, Australia is averaging 13.8 points and 6.8 rebounds, including 18.5 points and 7.0 boards in Big Ten play.
One of three Nebraska captains this season joining senior Kate Cain and junior Sam Haiby, Bourne averaged 5.9 points and 4.4 rebounds as a true freshman for the Huskers last year.
Sam Haiby enters the Purdue game as Nebraska’s season leader in scoring (15.6 ppg), rebounding (8.4 rpg) and assists (3.6 apg). The 5-9 junior guard from Moorhead, Minn., erupted for a career-high 33 points to go along with nine rebounds and four assists in the win over Illinois (Dec. 10) to earn a spot on the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Weekly Honor Roll (Dec. 14).
Junior Bella Cravens has been a major contributor as a starter in her first two Big Ten games. The 6-3 forward from Laie, Hawaii, is averaging 7.5 points and 9.0 rebounds, including a career-high-tying 16 rebounds in the win over Illinois and a Nebraska career-high 12 points at Indiana.
Three-time Lisa Leslie Award candidate Kate Cain anchors the Husker starting five inside. The 6-5 senior center from Middletown, N.Y., is Nebraska’s career block leader (295) and is poised to become just the sixth player in Big Ten history with 300 career blocked shots. Cain is averaging 8.4 points, 5.4 rebounds and 3.0 blocks through Nebraska’s first five games of 2020-21.
Nebraska began September with a 13-player roster but had just seven players available for the game at Indiana (Dec. 20). Fourth-year guard Taylor Kissinger closed her career because of chronic pain (hip), which followed surgery that cut short her 2019-20 season. Transfer Nailah Dillard underwent hip surgery (Dec. 15) and is out for the season. Trinity Brady (Idaho State, Dec. 6) and Ruby Porter (Creighton, Dec. 14) are both listed as day-to-day with lower leg injuries, and transfer MiCole Cayton has not yet been cleared to fully participate but continues to make progress (leg injury).
Purdue enters Wednesday’s game with a 4-2 overall record after running to its first Big Ten win with a 91-87 victory at Penn State on Sunday afternoon.
The Boilermakers are led by junior guard Kayana Traylor, who is averaging 16.5 points, 4.3 rebounds and a team-best 4.3 assists per game. Traylor erupted for a career-high 28 points while adding four rebounds, five assists and three steals in the win over Penn State.