Romeo leads Nebraska women past Illinois 86-71 in Big Ten

HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill. (AP) Natalie Romeo hit seven 3-pointers and scored 26 points, both career highs, to lead seventh-seeded Nebraska to an 86-71 win over Illinois in the second round of the Big Ten tournament on Thursday.

Nebraska (21-9) will play 14th-ranked Iowa, seeded second, in the quarterfinals on Friday.

Hailie Sample and Tear'a Laudermiller had 14 points apiece for the Cornhuskers while Allie Havers added 13 and Emily Cady had 11. Brandi Jeffery had nine rebounds and eight assists to go with her six points.

Ivory Crawford had 19 points and Amarah Coleman 18 for the Illini (15-16), who shot just 34.6 percent.

Romeo, a freshman who has started nine straight games since All-American Rachel Theriot was lost for the season with an ankle injury, was 5 of 7 behind the arc in the first half when the Cornhuskers (21-9) opened a 49-29 lead. She broke her career marks early in the second half with a layup, which she turned into a three-point play. Nebraska shot 61.7 percent and led by 28 with 8:21 to play.

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