All-America candidate Lindsey Moore scored 17 points in the final 6:06 to bring the No. 23 Nebraska women’s basketball team back from a five-point deficit for a 74-65 win at USC on Friday afternoon.
With the comeback victory in a game of runs, Nebraska improved to 5-1 on the season, while USC slipped to 2-2.
Moore, a 5-9 senior point guard from Covington, Wash., led the Huskers with 23 points and seven rebounds, while adding four assists and two steals.
Fellow All-America candidate Jordan Hooper added 19 points and seven rebounds, while sophomore forward Emily Cady contributed 14 points and seven big boards in the win.
After trailing 33-29 at the half and 40-33 early in the second half, the Huskers used a huge 17-2 spurt to take a 50-42 lead on Hooper’s three-point play with 13:24 left. But the Trojans responded with a 15-0 run of their own to claim a 57-52 lead on Ariya Crook’s three-pointer with 7:02 left. Crook finished with a game-high 25 points, but did not score the rest of the way.
While Moore did the most damage for the Huskers down the stretch, sophomore Tear’a Laudermill hit the biggest shot of the day for the Big Red. The 5-9 guard from Riverside, Calif., buried a three-pointer from the right wing in front of the NU bench with one second left on the shot clock and 1:49 on the game clock to give the Huskers a 64-63 lead. On the ensuing possession, freshman guard Rachel Theriot came up with a steal and hit Cady on the block, who finished strong against USC’s Cassie Harberts to push the NU lead to 66-63 lead with 1:24 left.
Moore did the rest, scoring NU’s final eight points, including six straight free throws to seal the win in the final 22 seconds. Moore hit 13-of-15 free throws for the game and went 5-of-8 from the field in the victory.
Moore led a 28-of-32 effort at the free throw line for the Huskers, including 17-for-18 shooting at the stripe in the second half. Sophomore forward Hailie Sample went a perfect 6-for-6 at the line, while Hooper added 5-for-5 shooting at the line.
For the game, Nebraska hit 22-of-51 shots from the field, including 13-of-25 in the second half. NU hit just 2-of-7 threes in the game, with both of those coming in the second half. The Huskers won the turnover battle 15-12, to offset USC’s 34-31 edge on the glass.
USC outshot Nebraska, 24-of-54 (44.4 percent) for the game, including a 7-for-16 effort as a team from three-point range. Crook hit 5-of-8 threes to lead the Trojans from beyond the arc. While USC outscored NU 21-6 from three-point range, the Huskers outscored the Trojans 28-10 at the line.
Harberts helped the Trojans with 13 points and eight rebounds, while Christina Marinacci contributed 10 points and six boards inside for USC.
The Trojans used an 11-0 run in just 1:25 in the first half to take a 15-5 lead with just over 12 minutes. But the Huskers responded with a surge of their own to tie the game at 22 with just over five minutes left in the half. USC used a late-shot clock three-pointer with 1:52 left and a buzzer-beating putback with just over one second left – both from Crook – to take a 33-29 lead into the locker room at halftime. Crook led all scorers in the first half with 12 points, while Jordan Adams added seven points, five rebounds and three assists for the Trojans. Harberts contributed five points and six boards for USC in the half.
Hooper led the Huskers with 10 first-half points on 5-of-8 shooting, while Cady added seven points. NU hit just 9-of-26 shots (34.6 percent) from the field, and just 0-of-2 three-pointers. The Huskers were 11-of-14 at the free throw line in the half. USC outrebounded NU 22-16 in the first half, while NU won the turnover battle, 7-6.
USC hit 13-of-31 first-half shots (41.9 percent), including 4-of-9 threes (44.4 percent). The Trojans also connected on 3-of-6 free throws in the opening period.
The Huskers return home to take on No. 10 Maryland on Wednesday, Nov. 28. Tip-off between the Huskers and Terps in the Big Ten/ACC Challenge is set for 7 p.m.