James Palmer Jr. leads Nebraska to 94-75 win over Creighton

(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images)
(Photo by Steven Branscombe/Getty Images) /

Nebraska basketball gets its first win over Creighton since 2010.

December 5, 2010. That was the last time the Nebraska basketball defeated the Creighton Bluejays. I was a sophomore in high school that year. Fast forward to 2018 and I have graduated college. It is safe to say that Nebraska was overdue for a win against their rivals. They finally ended that drought tonight thanks to two major factors: the play of senior James Palmer Jr. and their ability to hit from the three-point arc.

The beginning of the first half was a strong one by Creighton. Sophomore guard Mitch Ballock was all over the place for the Bluejays, seeming to be involved in every play. That would seem to set the tone for the rest of the game, as he would finish as Creighton’s leading scorer with 23 points. After a little while though, Nebraska basketball began to settle in. Junior Isaiah Roby  played a physical brand of basketball, and it seemed like he was all over the glass at times. In what was a true team effort in the first half, Nebraska outscored Creighton by a 47-34 margin. This was truly an offensive bonanza on the part of both teams. That could only mean good things for the second half.

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Creighton would not go away quietly however. Ballock continued to be a marksman from a three-point range, making his first two shots of the second half. That gave the Bluejays new life. However, the Huskers managed to keep the game under control. Although it may have seemed like Creighton was working its way toward a comeback, the reality was that Nebraska had the game in hand all along. Sometimes, the addition-by-subtraction philosophy works well in the game of basketball. This time however, it did not work for Creighton.

Ballock earned some well-deserved rest and that gave Nebraska basketball the opportunity to pour it on the opposition without one of their top scoring threats on the floor. They did a nice job of locking down Creighton’s other scoring threat, Ty-Shon Alexander, and in the meantime they continued to play through Palmer. He had a great night from beyond the three-point line, going 6-for-7 and really establishing himself as a force on the perimeter. The 30 points were a season-high for him, and the only other time he came close to that number was on November 14 against Seton Hall. In that contest, he would finish with 29 points.

Nebraska’s next game will take place against Oklahoma State. That will occur on December 16 at 7:00 PM ET. The game will be televised on the Big Ten Network. The Cowboys suffered a loss to the Houston cougars on Saturday by a 63-53 score. The Huskers will look to make it to losses in a row for Oklahoma State. This is a Nebraska team that, despite its depth problems, should be able to make a little bit of noise come March. The key here will be to see if they can keep up this level of play until then.