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Nebraska rallies late, drop game to Washington State in double overtime

November 19, 2018

PULLMAN, Wash. — The defense isn’t getting much better. Rebounding remains an issue, too.

So even when the Nebraska women’s basketball team has another strong night on offense — as it did in Friday night’s 87-84 double-overtime loss to Washington State — it’s not enough.

“Very, very disappointing loss,” Nebraska coach Amy Williams said on her postgame radio show.

NU (1-2) couldn’t slow the Cougars’ 1-2 scoring punch of Borislava Hristova (31 points) and Chanelle Molina (26). Nebraska also struggled on the boards to stop Washington State center Maria Kostourkova, who had a game-high 19 rebounds.

Hristova — nicknamed “Bobby Buckets” — scored six of WSU’s nine points in the second overtime.

Washington State (1-2) broke open a 25-25 game halfway through the second quarter with a 14-4 run to end the first half. The Cougars shot 53.9 percent in the first half and extended their lead to 13 points several times in the second half.

“You cannot dig yourself those holes and find a way to win — particularly on the road,” Williams said.

Freshman guard Sam Haiby of Moorhead, Minnesota — who scored a career-high 20 points — spearheaded a second-half comeback along with senior forward Maddie Simon (15 points, seven rebounds). Haiby hit a 3-pointer with 4:56 left to cut WSU’s lead to 68-63, part of a 10-0 run. Haiby’s two free throws tied the game at 68, and NU forward Taylor Kissinger hit two more free throws to tie the game at 70. NU’s Hannah Whitish missed a jumper at the regulation buzzer that would have won the game.

In the first overtime, Haiby’s four straight points gave NU a 78-74 lead with 1:42 left, but the Huskers couldn’t hold it, as a Kostourkova layup with two seconds left sent the game into a second overtime. In that frame, Whitish banked in a 3-pointer to give Nebraska its last lead at 84-82. Whitish missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer that would have sent the game into a third overtime.

Williams praised Haiby as a “spark.”

“Right now we’re needing to have complete players on both sides — to be solid on defense without making mistakes defensively but also give us that spark on the offensive end,” Williams said. “We’ve got players that I think are playing pretty good on the defensive end and not giving us much on offense and vice versa. We’ve got to be able to combine that.”

Nebraska (1-2)........................19 20 21 10 8 9—87

At Washington St. (1-2)............18 11 18 23 8 6—84

NU: Whitish 3-10 2-2 11, Eliely 2-5 3-3 8, Simon 6-12 2-2 15, Cain 5-9 0-0 10, Kissinger 2-5 2-2 7, Haiby 8-15 3-3 20, Hudson 0-2 0-0 0, Veerbeek 4-8 1-3 9, Mitchell 0-1 0-0 0, Brown 1-3 0-0 2, Mershon 0-3 2-4 2. Totals: 31-73 15-19 84.

WS: Cha.Molina 10-18 1-2 26, Levy 0-1 0-0 0, Kostourkova 4-11 5-6 13, Swedlund 4-9 1-2 12, Hristova 12-21 6-8 31, Motuga 0-2 2-4 2, Che.Molina 0-5 1-2 1, Subasic 1-1 0-0 2. Totals: 31-68 16-24 87.

3-point shots: NU 7-17 (Whitish 3-6, Eliely 1-3, Simon 1-3, Kissinger 1-1, Haiby 1-2, Brown 0-1, Mershon 0-1), WS 9-22 (Cha.Molina 5-8, Swedlund 3-5, Hristova 1-5, Motuga 0-1, Che.Molina 0-3). Assists: NU 14 (Whitish 4), WS 13 (Kostourkova 3). Personal fouls: NU 23 (Cain 5), WS 17 (Kostourkova, Swedlund, Che.Molina 3). Fouled out: NU, Cain. Officials: Michol Murray, Brian Woods, Marc Merritt. A: 535.

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