LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Freshman Dererk Pardon had 28 points and 12 rebounds in his second college game, and Northwestern came back from a 12-point second-half deficit to defeat Nebraska, 81-72, on Wednesday.

The Wildcats (13-1, 1-0 Big Ten) won their 10th straight game and are off to their best start since 1930-31. The Cornhuskers (8-6, 0-1) are 0-5 in Big Ten openers since joining the conference in 2011-12.

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Pardon had 23 points in the second half to help bring the Wildcats back from a halftime deficit for the third time in four games. The 6-foot-8, 230-pounder made 11 of 14 shots from the field and had seven offensive rebounds — six in the second half. Tre Demps finished with 17 points and Aaron Falzon with 12 for the Wildcats, who made 8 of 9 free throws in the last 1:34.

Andrew White made 5 of 8 3-pointers and scored 22 points to lead the Huskers, and Benny Parker had career highs with 17 points and five 3s.

The Wildcats were playing their second game without 7-footer Alex Olah, who’s out indefinitely with a foot injury. Northwestern coach Chris Collins brought Pardon out of a planned redshirt season on Sunday, and the freshman played like a veteran.

The Huskers had no answer for Pardon in the low post, and he scored nine points over eight minutes to help the Wildcats whittle a 51-39 deficit to three points. Scottie Lindsey’s 3-pointer from the corner tied it 60-60 with 7 minutes left.

Nebraska went nearly 5 minutes without a field goal late in the half, and the Wildcats pulled away.

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It was the second straight game Northwestern came back after being down double digits. The Wildcats erased a 14-point deficit to beat Loyola (Maryland) on Sunday.

Northwestern, down 16-10, scored on seven of eight possessions to take a 28-24 lead and looked as if it had all the momentum. Falzon made three straight 3-pointers during the 18-8 spurt.

But the Wildcats couldn’t rein in Parker, who kept Nebraska close with four 3s in the first half. The Huskers led 38-35 at half after White made a 3-pointer and a fade-away jumper after a Northwestern shot-clock violation.


Northwestern: The Wildcats held a 40-25 rebounding advantage. … Bryant McIntosh, coming off a 33-point game against Loyola, was held to 11 but had eight assists against one turnover. … Guard Jordan Ash was teammates with Nebraska’s Glynn Watson Jr. at Westchester (Illinois) St. Joseph High …

Nebraska: Parker had seven assists and two steals to go with his 17 points and five 3s. … Lost for the first time in five all-time meetings with Northwestern in Lincoln.

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