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Depth proved to be a key down the stretch Thursday night for Nebraska.

Penn State (9-12, 3-8 Big Ten) closed the gap to one point early in the fourth quarter and kept the game at a one-possession difference to the seven-minute mark. But the Huskers (17-4, 6-4 Big Ten) turned up the defensive pressure from there.

Nebraska held Penn State without a basket for the remainder of the game, outscoring the Lions 18-5 to take the win 76-61.

“Defensively we really locked in,” Nebraska coach Amy Williams said.

After a close outing Tuesday, Nebraska again struggled at times in this one. Penn State utilized full-court pressure and mixed in a zone defense that the Huskers did not begin to figure out and exploit until late in the third quarter.

Just shy of her second triple-double of the season, Jaz Shelley notched a double-double of 12 rebounds and 11 assists to go with six points and three blocked shots.

“You need players that are gonna be able to impact the game even if they’re not scoring,” Williams said. “We’re gonna need her to keep doing that.”

Issie Bourne nearly had a double-double as well, scoring 14 points and grabbing nine rebounds.

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The freshmen for Big Red again shined. Alexis Markowski scored a team-high 18 points. Allison Weidner added 14 points, including 10 in the final frame. The two combined for 14 points in a row as Nebraska extended its lead late.

“What a spark Allison gave us there, particularly in the fourth quarter,” Williams said. “I thought she really was aggressive, got to the basket, made some big plays, and gave us a scoring punch that we needed.

“And if you hold (Alexis) down for a little bit, you’re not gonna hold her down for long.”

As a team, Nebraska shot 41.8 percent from the floor and made 7-of-25 threes. Continuing to play high-level, team basketball, the Huskers notched 23 assists on 28 made baskets.

After four consecutive home games, Nebraska goes on the road for the next three. First up is No. 17 Maryland on Sunday.