LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) Nebraska followed its two worst shooting performances against Big Ten opponents with its best one in four seasons, and Terran Petteway was there to lead the way.
Petteway scored 28 points and the Cornhuskers shot 62.8 percent from the floor in a 76-60 victory over Northwestern on Tuesday night.
Petteway, the conference's No. 3 scorer, came out of the shell he was in the previous two games. He was 1 for 11 while scoring seven points in a loss to Michigan, and he took a season-low eight shots while scoring 10 in a loss to Minnesota.
He was back to his old self against the Wildcats, going 8 for 16 and making five 3-pointers.
''The team was telling me I was being too patient, probing too much,'' Petteway said. ''That's definitely the reason I came out so aggressive in the first half, to try to get going.''
Petteway made his first four 3-pointers, including three in a 1:21 span that got the Huskers out to a 21-13 lead.
''When Terran had that crazy outburst, the guys were like, `We're not losing tonight,' " Nebraska coach Tim Miles said.
Petteway went without a field goal for almost 19 minutes spanning the halves but finished his big night with a 3-pointer and breakaway dunk in the final minute.
Walter Pitchford added 14 points and Shavon Shields had 11 points and a career-high seven assists for the Huskers (13-9, 5-5 Big Ten), who snapped their two-game losing streak.
Northwestern (10-12, 1-8), which lost its eighth straight, got 16 points from Alex Olah, 12 from Scottie Lindsey and 11 from Vic Law.
The Huskers' accuracy was their best since they shot 63 percent against Arkansas-Pine Bluff in 2010-11. Nebraska also shot a season-best 47.6 percent on 3-pointers against the Wildcats.
''We had been struggling shooting, it's no secret,'' Shields said. ''So getting everyone step-in 3s and a lot of easier looks that they can knock down was something we've been talking about.''
The Huskers were coming off horrid road losses to Michigan and Minnesota. They shot a combined 33.6 percent in those two games, committed a season-high 20 turnovers against Michigan and scored a season-low 42 points against Minnesota.
The Huskers, down 41-40 early in the second half, scored 17 straight points to go up 57-41. David Rivers had six points during the run and Petteway scored five in a row. The Wildcats went scoreless for 6 1/2 minutes and without a field goal for almost eight.
''I didn't think it was so much what we didn't do,'' Wildcats coach Chris Collins said. ''Obviously, Nebraska hadn't been shooting the ball well. For those guys to come out and shoot the ball the way they did... When they're shooting the ball like that, because their defense is good, they can beat anybody in this league, especially on their home floor.''
Northwestern: Wildcats' season scoring leaders Tre Demps and Bryant McIntosh combined for 10 points after totaling 36 in Saturday's loss to Purdue. ...Terran Petteway defended Demps and Benny Parker guarded McIntosh most of the game.
Nebraska: The Huskers have won seven of eight games against Northwestern since 1975. Nebraska has held opponents to 37.5 percent shooting in their first six Big Ten home games.
SHIELDS OVER 1,000
Nebraska's Shavon Shields went over 1,000 points for his career by scoring 11 against the Wildcats. ''It's an awesome accomplishment,'' he said. ''I couldn't do it without these guys. But there's a bigger picture we're trying to get to with these guys.''
Northwestern coach Chris Collins said the eight-game losing streak is wearing on his team. The setback to Nebraska was only the third of the Wildcats' nine Big Ten losses decided by more than seven points.
''We're a little beat down, no question about it,'' Collins said. ''We had a stretch of five games as gut-wrenching as you can have. We are what we are. We have one win. To me, I feel we should have four or five.''
Northwestern visits Wisconsin on Saturday.
Nebraska visits Penn State on Saturday.