The Lady Utes fell to the No. 15/16 Nebraska Cornhuskers 66-43 Sunday afternoon in Lincoln, dropping their record for the season to 1-2. The loss means the Utes leave the state of Nebraska winless after losing Thursday's game against Creighton.
The loss to Nebraska was not unexpected, but the manner in which it occured was less than encouraging. Nebraska set the tone early opening the game on a 17-3 run. Forward Emily Cady made two jumpers and a free throw in the first minutes of the game as Nebraksa raced out to a quick 7-0 lead four minutes into the game. Utah guard Paige Crozon swished a three to pull the Utes back to within four. It was the closest the Utes would get to the Cornhuskers the rest of the afternoon.
Promptly after Crozon's three, Nebraska's Rachel Theriot took over, scoring six points with two assists over the next four minutes to put the Cornhuskers up 17-3. Utah's Malia Nawahine responded with two layups and a free throw to cut the lead to 19-8 and create a little Utah momentum before Nebraska called a timeout to regroup. After the timeout, it was the Emily Cady show, as she would score nine points to close out the half, giving the Huskers a commanding 38-17 lead going into the locker room.
After the half Nebraska cruised, with Cady and Theriot leading the way to a 66-43 victory. The Utes would never get closer than 13 points in the second half. Cady finished with 25 points and nine rebounds for the Huskers, while Theriot scored 20 to go with six assists.
For the Lady Utes, Malia Nawahine provided one of the only bright spots with 14 points, and freshman Tanaeya Boclair had a promising night with nine points and six rebounds. Taryn Wicijowski was held in check scoring only six points and four rebounds, and Joseta Fatuesi was shutdown for the second consecutive game with no points and six rebounds.
The Utes head west next, traveling to Nevada for the four team Nugget Classic in Reno. The Utes will take on Ole Miss on Friday at 6:30 pm MT and either Portland or Nevada on Saturday depending on Friday's results. Ole Miss is 3-1, however has played a very weak schedule to date with victories over Grambling, Mississippi Valley State and Southern. Nevada's lone victory this year has come agains UC Santa Barbara while Portland is winless this season. The Nugget Classic will give the Utes a chance to get back on their feet and hopefully pick up a couple wins.