After traveling half the day Saturday and all day Sunday, the Nebraska women’s basketball team finally touched down in Australia on Monday morning.
Following a brief stop in Sydney, the Huskers flew on to Melbourne for a few hours of sightseeing before heading to the Crowne Plaza Hotel for some rest.
The Big Red open the competitive portion of their tour on Tuesday when they take on the Frankston Blues at 8 p.m. (5 a.m. central). Frankston competes in the South Division of the South East Australia Basketball League (SEABL). Frankston’s top players include former Gonzaga standout Kelly Bowen, former Houston star Emily Fryters and former Saint Mary’s (Calif.) guard Kate Gaze. Gaze was a starting guard on the Gaels team that dropped an 84-73 decision to the 2009-10 Huskers at the Saint Mary’s Hilton Thanksgiving Tournament in Moraga, Calif. She led the Gaels with 18 points the following season in a 64-63 loss on Nov. 20, 2010 at the Devaney Center.
Nebraska senior All-America point guard Rachel Theriot will not be competing for the Huskers in their four games in Australia, but said she was excited to be with the team on the tour.
“No better way to start my senior year than going to Australia with the team,” Theriot said. “It is a great opportunity and I’m extremely thankful for it. The opportunity to go to Australia has provided us with some great practice time this summer, and those workouts and practices have allowed us to get ahead in a sense.”
Theriot, who averaged 16.5 points, 4.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists before suffering the ankle injury in practice on Feb. 3, said her rehabilitation from surgery in late-February is right on track.
“Recovery is going as planned and I feel pretty good about where I am at right now,” Theriot said. “I can’t wait to be out there again with the team and playing full go. Our summer workouts have helped us with team chemistry and everyone is working hard right now and committed. I’m definitely excited about this year.”
A first-team All-Big Ten selection and the 2014 Big Ten Tournament MVP, Theriot is expected to be an All-America candidate on and off the court for the Huskers as a senior in 2016. She could also be a contender for the Senior CLASS Award, which honors the nation’s top senior in competition, the classroom and the community who also displays outstanding character.