Hoosiers are too much for the Huskers.
Bloomington, Ind. — Senior center Jessica Periago scored a career-high 15 points on five three-pointers, but it was not enough as No. 24 Nebraska had its 37-game regular-season winning streak snapped with a 67-61 loss at Indiana on Sunday afternoon.
With the loss, Nebraska slipped to 6-1 on the year, while Indiana improved to 5-3.
Periago's career-high fifth three-pointer came on her fifth attempt to give Nebraska a 61-60 lead with 2:30 left, but the Huskers were shut out the rest of the way as Indiana made the plays late to close out the win.
Senior guard Dominique Kelley led the Huskers with team highs of 21 points and six rebounds, while Periago matched Kelley for the team-lead with six boards. Kelley also dished out a team-high six assists and grabbed a team-high three steals.
Freshman Jordan Hooper pitched in 13 points, but hit just 5-of-15 field goal attempts in the game. Catheryn Redmon managed six points and five blocks, but grabbed just two boards for NU.
Rebounding was big for the Hoosiers, who controlled the boards with a 40-32 advantage, including a 17-10 edge on the offensive glass. However, NU matched IU in second-chance points with eight apiece.
In addition to the plus-eight rebounding margin, Indiana produced a plus-two turnover margin (17-15), helping the Hoosiers attempt nine more field goal attempts in the game than Nebraska.
For the game, Indiana hit 27-of-62 shots (43.5 percent) from the field, and 6-of-21 three-pointers. Jori Davis led IU with 21 points, while Hope Elam contributed 14 points, including 4-of-8 three-point shooting. Danilsa Andujar also had a career game for the Hoosiers with 10 points and 12 rebounds, while point guard Whitney Lindsay contributed 10 points, five rebounds and a game-high eight assists.
Nebraska managed 41.5 percent (22-53) shooting, including a solid 9-for-19 from long range against Indiana's extended zone defense.
Nebraska trailed at the half for the first time this season, heading to the locker room with a 28-26 deficit. The Huskers trailed by as many as eight points in the first half at 21-13, before Periago buried three consecutive three-pointers during a five-minute stretch to pull NU to 23-19.
After a pair of free throws by Kelley trimmed the IU lead to two at 23-21 with 7:23 left, Davis and Elam hit back-to-back buckets for the Hoosiers to extend the margin back to 28-21 with 5:03 left.
After going six minutes without scoring, Hooper ended the NU drought with a free throw with 1:24 left. Kelley then sparked the Huskers at both ends and hit two free throws to cut the margin at 28-24 with 1:00 left in the half, before Redmon hit a layup with three seconds left to make it 28-26 IU.
Nebraska's defense held Indiana scoreless for the final 5:03 in the first half, while limiting IU to just 36.4 percent (12-33) shooting. The Hoosiers also hit just 2-of-9 three-pointers and 2-of-3 free throws. Indiana's defense was also successful against NU, forcing 12 first-half turnovers, while holding NU to just 9-of-23 shooting. Periago was the only Husker to hit a three-pointer. NU was 5-of-6 from the line. NU was outrebounded by IU, 19-17, in the first half.
The Huskers continued their first-half run with the first four points of the second half to take their first lead since an 8-7 edge early in the first half.
IU ended a seven-minute scoring drought with back-to-back threes from Elam to take a 34-30 edge, but five straight points from Kelley gave NU the lead back at 37-36. After a Davis layup for IU, Kellie McCann-Smith took a pass after a Periago offensive rebound and drained a three to give NU a 40-38 lead.
After a Lindsey free throw for IU, Hooper scored on the block, before Periago hit her fourth three of the game to give the Huskers their biggest lead of the game at 45-39 with 13:05 left. NU's lead grew to its largest margin at seven after a Kelley basket to make it 47-40, but IU answered with a 9-0 run, capped by five straight points from Lindsey to give the Hoosiers a 49-47 edge with 10:23 left.
From that point, it was a one-possession game with six lead changes the rest of the way. Hooper hit two three-pointers to give the Huskers a lead, the last coming with 6:57 left. Kelley's two with 6:10 left put NU up 58-56, before back-to-back buckets for Lindsey and Andujar gave IU a lead at 60-58 with just under 3:30 to play.
Periago's three from the corner gave NU its final lead of the game at 61-60 with 2:30 left, but IU answered with a three-point play from Andrea McGuirt to take a 63-61 lead that the Hoosiers did not relinquish. A pair of Davis baskets closed the game for the Hoosiers, as the Huskers were unable to hit another shot.
The Huskers continue their two-game road swing by taking on Creighton on Wednesday in Omaha. Tip-off between Nebraska and the Bluejays (4-2) at DJ Sokol Arena is set for 7:05 p.m. with free live audio provided by the Husker Sports Network on Huskers.com.
Source: University of Nebraska Athletic Dept.