(2) Iowa defeats (5) Nebraska in Big Ten Women’s Tournament Title Game

Written by on March 11, 2024

In a game closer than most expected, (2) Iowa is your Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament Champion defeating (5) Nebraska by a score of 94-89 in overtime.

Nebraska came into game with two major disadvantages to begin with. First off, they had already played an extra game due to Iowa’s double bye. Also, this may have been at a *neutral* side but it was Carver-Hawkeye Arena North.

Neither of those factors seemed to bother the Cornhuskers (22-11, 11-7) who played inspiring basketball once again. Alexis Markowski was her usual self today compiling 23 points, 13 rebounds and 5 assists. Additionally, the Junior was named to the All-Tournament team.

“We believe in one another. We believe in what our coaches are saying, and belief can take you really far,” Markowski said following the defeat.

Jaz Shelley had 16 points, 13 assists and 6 rebounds. Along with Markowski, Shelley was named to the All-Tournament team.

“I think everyone is still pretty down right now. We kind of just rallied around each other and just wanted to appreciate how special what we just did was,” Shelley said after a 4th game in as many days.

True Freshman Logan Nissley compiled 13 points.

“What Logan did was special. What people don’t know is what she’s fighting through to be out here on this court, fighting with her teammates,” Nebraska head coach Amy Williams said.

Natalie Potts had 23 points and 9 rebounds. Callin Hake had 8 points off the bench.

The Cornhuskers will now await their seed and location on Selection Sunday in less than a week. This run will certainly help their seeding, as they are currently slated to be an 8 seed and play Kansas. If Nebraska were to advance, they would hypothetically play Stanford on their home floor in the Round of 32.

Iowa (29-4, 15-3) got it done but it wasn’t pretty. In fact, Iowa only led this game for 8:54 and that included most of overtime.

Caitlin Clark who struggled in the first half, was clutch down the stretch and finished with an excellent stat line. Clark had 34 points, 12 assists and 7 rebounds. She was named the Most Valuable Player in this tournament for the 3rd consecutive season.

“If we want to reach our goals in March, we are going to find way to win that aren’t always pretty. You got to be resilient and gritty,” Clark said.

Sydney Affolter had a double-double today which helped her land on the All-Tournament Team.

“Sydney Affolter steps up and plays the best basketball of her career. I’m really proud of her,” Clark said about her teammate.

Hannah Stuelke added 25 points and 9 rebounds.

“I think we just have worked really hard all season,” Stuelke on being resilient and capturing the title Sunday afternoon.

Kate Martin had 4 humongous 3-pointers, many of those coming late in the game to help Iowa seal the victory.

Iowa has a chance to attain a number 1 seed in March Madness after Sunday’s victory. Currently they are projected to be the top seed in the “Albany 2” side of the bracket slotted to face the winner of Sacred Heart / Holy Cross. UConn is also projected to be in that section of the bracket as a 3 seed. That could potentially be a Paige Bueckers / Caitlin Clark matchup in the making.

All-Tournament Team:

Jaz Shelley (NEB)

Caitlin Clark (IOWA)

Laila Phelia (MICH)

Sydney Affolter (IOWA)

Alexis Markowski (NEB)

MVP: Caitlin Clark (IOWA)

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