Paced by a program-record 49.725 on vault, the No. 9 Nebraska women’s gymnastics team captured its third consecutive conference crown – the last two coming in the Big Ten – Saturday night at the 2013 Big Ten Women’s Gymnastics Championships.
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The NCAA women’s tourney tipped off Saturday, and the Big Ten went 2-0 on the opening day. Michigan State opened up the Big Ten slate by taking down upset-minded Marist, 55-47, while Nebraska ran away from Chattanooga, 73-59. Jump inside for recaps and stats.
The Gophers often found easy access to the rim, hitting 50 percent of their shots. And Minnesota was on fire from beyond the arc, hitting 9-of-16 (56 percent). No doubt, UCLA missed injured star freshman Jordan Adams, as the Bruins had a short rotation. Still, Minnesota deserves credit.
Roy Devyn Marble scored 28 points to help Iowa hold off Stony Brook 75-63 on Friday night in the second round of the NIT. Aaron White added 13 points and seven rebounds for Iowa (23-12), which advances to quarterfinal matchup against the winner of Sunday’s game between Virginia and St. John’s. The Hawkeyes have won nine of their last 12 games.
Andre Hollins scored 28 points and Minnesota rolled past punchless UCLA 83-63 on Friday night in the second round of the NCAA tournament, a game that could be Bruins freshman Shabazz Muhammad’s last in college and coach Ben Howland’s final one leading the program.
The Buckeyes shot lights out throughout the game, hitting 50 percent in the first half en route to building a 43-33 edge at intermission. For the game, Ohio State knocked down 48 percent of its shots. Aaron Craft was all over the court, impacting in a variety of ways. Sound familiar? The junior defensive demon had seven steals and seven assists, while also chipping in four points. And he played his usual suffocating defense, helping force 19 turnovers. A 10-point game at halftime quickly became a glorified scrimmage in the second half, with the Buckeyes notching an eye-popping 52 points after intermission in this lopsided opening NCAA triumph.
It was defense that boosted Illinois to victory on this day. Illinois was especially stingy in the first half, which it allowed only 21 points and closed the final 7:05 of the half on a 13-0 run to take a 37-21 halftime edge. And the Illini showed an ability to withstand adversity in the second half, squandering a 16-point halftime lead and falling behind 44-39 with 9:00 left. But Illinois stayed composed and regained the lead, finishing the game on an 18-5 run.