OMAHA, Neb. - A red-hot shooting performance
helped No. 13 Creighton cruise past the Drake University men's basketball team
by a 91-61 margin Tuesday night at the CenturyLink Center.
The Bulldogs were led by Joey
King (Eagan, Minn.) with 17 points off of the bench. All five of the
freshman's made shots were from three-point distance for his third highest
point total of the season. Creighton had four players in double figures with
Ethan Wragge leading all scorers with 22 points.
With the win, the preseason
Missouri Valley Conference favorite Bluejays move to 15-1 on the season and 4-0
in conference play. The Bulldogs fall to 6-9 on the season, 0-4 in MVC play.
“We clearly ran into a buzzsaw of
a basketball team tonight,” Drake head coach Mark Phelps said. “They have been
playing well and certainly played very well tonight, so give them credit.”
The MVC-leading Bluejays shot 64
percent from the field on the night, including 16 three-pointers. The Bulldogs
were unable to get many open shots and converted on 35 percent from the field
(21-of-59) and 32 percent from three (9-of-28). The squad struggled early,
scoring nine points in the first 10 minutes of the contest.
“The fast start certainly put us
on our heels,” Phelps said. “We couldn't, over the course of the game, recover
from that. They were hitting three-pointers at a great pace.”
The Bluejays came out gunning with
three-pointers by Grant Gibbs, Doug McDermott and Jahenns Manigat to give
Creighton an 11-2 lead. Before the Bulldogs were able to gather their bearings,
the hosts had jumped out to a 21-point lead, 30-9, 10 minutes into the game.
The Bluejays had 28 assists on their 34 baskets.
King, who was coming off of a
career-high 21 points last Saturday, led Drake's bench which scored 31 of the
teams points with five points from junior Richard Carter (Detroit,
Mich.) and five from sophomore Jeremy Jeffers (Wilson, N.C.).
Senior Jordan Clarke (Rockville,
Md.) got out of a scoring slump to drop 11 points on three of six shooting and
five free throws. Freshman Micah Mason (Allegheny, Pa.) made 3-of-4 from
the arc and scored 11 points while adding four assists.
Creighton shot a blistering 67
percent from the field on 19-of-28 shooting in the first half and made 9-of-13
three-pointers (69 percent).
Wragge came off of the bench and
hit three three-pointers, two off assists from McDermott and scored 11 points
in the half. Creighton also dominated the rebounding, grabbing 24 to Drake's
nine to open the game.
King and Mason hit back-to-back
three-pointers to open the second half and give the Bulldogs some momentum. The
squad then settled into a zone defense that slowed the Bluejays, but was unable
to produce enough stops as Creighton was still able to hit 60 percent from the
field and 50 percent from the arc in the half.
“Clearly the zone slowed them
down,” Phelps said. “Clearly they were in an unbelievable groove tonight and I
felt the zone slowed them down and at least made them work more.”
The Bulldogs aim to move into the
win column in MVC play when they visit Illinois State Saturday, Jan. 12. The
Redbirds are also winless in conference play. The game is scheduled to tipoff
at 7 p.m. CST.