All-American Rachel Theriot scored 20 of her game-high 27 points in the second half to rally No. 19 Nebraska from a seven-point second-half deficit to a 58-53 victory on Sunday over the Illinois Fighting Illini.
Nebraska trailed 49-43 with 6:42 left, but Theriot scored eight straight points over the next two minutes to tie the score at 51 with 4:30 left. After nearly 1:30 both teams being stuck at that scored, Theriot scored again to give Nebraska the lead for good at 53-51 with 3:03 left. The Big Red then got a free throw from Hailie Sample and a layup from Emily Cady to push the NU lead to 56-51 with 1:34 left. Brandi Jeffery added a free throw with 14 seconds left to push the margin to 57-51.
With the victory, Nebraska improved to 12-3 overall and 2-2 in the Big Ten with a sweep of a pair of Big Ten road wins this week. The Fighting Illini slipped to 11-5 and 2-2 in the conference.
Amarah Coleman scored the only four points for the Illini in the final 6:40, with a bucket at 5:28 before getting the final two for the Illini with 7.6 seconds left. Coleman led Illinois with 18 points off the bench for the game, including eight of the Illini’s final 10 points over the last 10:30. Cady and Allie Havers each pitched in four first-half points.
The Huskers return home to take on three-time defending Big Ten champion Penn State on Thursday.