Kansas falls to Nebraska, 58-52
LINCOLN, Neb. — Nebraska snapped Kansas’ six-game win streak and handed the Jayhawks their first loss of the season after falling to the Huskers, 58-52, on Wednesday night inside Pinnacle Bank Arena.
It was a back and forth affair for most of the first half as both teams attempted to gain momentum early on. Nebraska had trouble handling the ball and turned it over 15 times in the first half, while Kansas shot went cold after a hot performance on the road last week against LSU.
Kansas owned a six-point advantage in the second quarter, but the Huskers started connecting on their shots from behind the arch, pulling away from the Jayhawks before halftime and left Kansas trailing at the break, 28-21. This marked the first time all season that KU headed into halftime trailing an opponent.
During the end of the third quarter and leading into the fourth quarter, the Jayhawks attempted a comeback, pulling within four with under a minute remaining, but ultimately, Kansas’ cold shooting and season-low 25.3 field goal percentage caused the comeback to fall short.
Double-figure scoring efforts by senior Kylee Kopatich and junior Mariane De Carvalho were not enough for the Jayhawks to mount a come-from-behind win and keep their perfect record intact.
Kopatich scored a team-leading 14 points, grabbed nine rebounds and tallied two assists, while recording her fourth double-digit scoring effort of the season and 29th of her career. De Carvalho found the net for 11 points and three rebounds, while recording her second double-figure scoring performance of the season and second of her career.
Sophomore Bailey Helgren grabbed a career-high 10 rebounds during the contest, making it her fourth-straight contest of the season recording eight or more rebounds.
Head coach Brandon Schneider
On Wednesday night’s game:
“A lot of what I thought happened most of the night was that our shot selection was really poor. We took a lot of contested two’s, I don’t mind shooting a high number of three’s, but we took a lot of threes off the dribble, did not touch multiple sides of the floor and did not share the ball. Our lack of offensive power and efficiency is what really affected our ability to finish possessions on the defensive end. Credit Nebraska, they played exactly like I thought they would, they are so much better than its record indicates. I’m sure that they felt like this was a game where they can get healthy, from a mental standpoint. They started playing the kind of basketball you’d expect out of them.”
On Nebraska’s defense:
“I thought that we got past the first line of defense quite a bit tonight, but when we drove in to help, we didn’t make good decisions there. We should’ve kicked the ball to the shooters. They took what we call ‘contested two’s’, they took a lot of really contested two’s.”
On starting undefeated last year and losing to Nebraska:
“We have to go and really focus on our preparation for LSU, our preparation was great. Practices were outstanding going in and that was not the case coming into this game. It’s about preparations, having everybody focused and ready to play at a high level. We felt like Nebraska could be the best team we’ve played in nonconference and that’s even with them being 2-5 coming in. They’re going to have the same type of season, I think that they had a year ago. They just have to get their mojo, they lost their mojo for a bit, being on the road that long.”
- The Jayhawks undefeated streak came to a close for the second-straight season with a loss to Nebraska.
- Kansas’ 28-21 deficit at the break is the first time this season that the Jayhawks have trailed at the half.
- KU shot a season-low 25.3 percent from the field in its first loss of the season.
- Senior forward Austin Richardson swatted away three shots for a career-high three blocks.
- Senior guard Kylee Kopatich led the Jayhawks with 14 points and nine rebounds, falling just shy of a double-double.
- Sophomore center Bailey Helgren notched a career-high 10 rebounds for her first double-figure rebounding effort of her career.
- Senior guard Jessica Washington tied her career high, snagging four steals against the Huskers.
The Jayhawks return to Allen Fieldhouse following their two-game road swing to host Grambling State on Sunday, Dec. 9 at 2 p.m. The game can be watched via the Jayhawk Television Network/ESPN+ or listened to on the Jayhawk Radio Network.
KUAthletics.com: The official online source for Kansas Athletics, Williams Education Fund contributions, tickets, merchandise, multimedia, photos and much, much more.