Creighton drained 12 three pointers, including four each from Ethan Wragge and Cavel Witter, as the men’s basketball team topped South Dakota 89-78 Tuesday night in opening-round action of the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament at the Omaha Civic Auditorium.
Creighton improved to 17-15 with the win, while South Dakota had its 13-game win streak snapped to end its season at 22-10.
Creighton shot 50 percent in the opening half while scoring a season-high first half total of 50 points by intermission. After back-to-back scoreless games, Darryl Ashford had 11 points in 10 minutes for CU, including a pair of double-clutch lay-ins. Ashford sparked a Bluejay bench that outscored USD 27-5 in the first half.
After hitting 5-of-11 three-pointers in the opening half, the Bluejays stayed hot from beyond the arc after halftime, knocking down 7-of-12 threes to finish the game 12-of-23 (.522) from long range. The Creighton bench, coming off a season-low nine points in an MVC Tournament loss to Bradley, scored a season-high 56 points with three reserves finishing in double figures.
Witter equaled Wayne Runnels for team-high honors with 15 points, both off the bench. Witter hit 4-of-5 three-pointers, while Runnels was 5-of-9 from the floor and 5-for-5 at the free-throw line for his 15. Ashford finished with 13 points off the bench. Wragge chipped in 14 points, making 4-of-6 three-pointers, the only starter in double figures. It was Wragge’s highest scoring output since December 16th.
The Bluejays move on in the CIT, hosting a quarterfinal game next Monday at the Omaha Civic Auditorium, against an opponent still be to be announced.
With Creighton’s normal home of Qwest Center Omaha booked by the NCAA Wrestling Championships, the game was played at the Omaha Civic Auditorium, the first men’s games there for the program since ending a 48-year run at the building in 2003.
Postgame comments from Dana Altman