LINCOLN, Neb. -- Deverell Biggs had 18 points and hit four throws in the final 7 seconds as Nebraska held on to defeat Northern Illinois 63-58 Saturday.
Nebraska (5-2) took a 48-35 lead on Tai Webster's layup with 13:17 remaining. But the Huskers then went 6 minutes without a basket. Northern Illinois (2-4) chipped away at the lead as Nebraska struggled from the free-throw line, making just 2 of 9 in a 6-minute stretch.
Jordan Threloff scored six straight in a 10-3 Northern Illinois run that cut Nebraska lead to 51-45 with 7:28 left. Nebraska pushed the lead back to nine on Biggs' driving layup that made the score 56-47 with 6:39 left.
But the Huskers managed just one point in almost 5 minutes and Daveon Ball's free throws cut the advantage to 57-55 with 1:18 left.
Nebraska's Leslie Smith then tipped in Biggs' miss with 59 seconds left to push the lead to four. Dontel Highsmith hit a 3-pointer with 8 seconds left to cut the margin to one before Biggs hit the game-clinching free throws.
Nebraska finished the game 20 of 33 from the free-throw line. Northern Illinois was 19 of 28 in a game that saw 47 fouls called. Nebraska made two more field goals than Northern Illinois in an evenly matched game that saw both teams pull down 38 rebounds and finish with 16 turnovers.
Smith had 13 points and nine rebounds for the Huskers. Terran Pettaway finished with 12 for Nebraska.
Threloff led Northern Illinois with 18 points, and Highsmith had 13 points for the Huskies.