Freshman Carli Tritz led the Creighton women’s basketball team to a 73-58 victory over Bradley Saturday afternoon at D.J. Sokol Arena. The five-time Missouri Valley Conference Newcomer of the Week made a bid for her sixth award by leading the team with 17 points, eight rebounds, five assists and three steals, as the Bluejays improved to 10-6 on the season and 4-1 in MVC play.
Creighton never trailed in the game, after scoring the first two ppoints of the game on a pair of Kellie Nelson free throws on the Jays’ first possession. Despite not making their first field goal of the game until nearly four minutes had ticked off the clock, the Braves struggled on offense too.
Bradley (8-9, 1-5 MVC) evened the game at 4-4 before Creighton scored the game’s next five points and the Jays would hold that lead for the remainder of the game. A 10-2 Bluejay burst midway through the first half gave the home team its largest lead of the half, up 25-12 with 6:34 to play. The Braves gained momentum heading into halftime however, as they closed on a 7-0 run over the final 97 seconds. MacKenzie Wescott scored the final seven first-half points for the Braves to make the halftime score 34-29 in favor of the Bluejays.
Creighton’s lead remained in single-digits for almost the first eight minutes of the second half, until Tritz hit back-to-back three-pointers to push a five-point lead to a 50-39 advantage with 12:17 to play. Tritz’s third three-pointer of the half at the 9:26 mark, gave Creighton a 12-point lead, up 57-45. The Bluejays held their double-digit lead for the remainder of the game, leading by as many as 16 down the stretch.
After a Raisa Taylor lay-up with 7:23 left in the game made the score 62-51 Creighton, there would be only five points scored in the game over the next 5:53. The Bluejays would get a three-pointer from Sam Schuett and a lay-up from Sarah Nelson in that span, while Bradley did not score its next points until 1:30 remained in the game.
Tritz scored 15 of her team-leading 17 points in the second half, making 5-of-7 shots from the field and all three of her three-point attempts in the second half. She also paced the Jays with eight boards, five assists and tied Schuett for game-high honors with three steals. Schuett chipped in 11 points, seven rebounds and four assists. Kellie Nelson also scored in double figures for the second straight game, finishing with 10 points.
The Bluejays attempted a season-high 36 three-pointers, making nine. The Jays shot 18-of-29 (.621) inside the three-point arc and finished 41.5 percent from the field. CU made all 10 of its free throw attempts in the win and managed 10 steals while forcing 23 Bradley turnovers.
Westcott finished with a career-high 18 points for BU, scoring 14 in the first half. Raisa Taylor (12 points, 10 rebounds) and Latasha Hollingshed (11, 10) both had double-doubles in the losing effort for Bradley. BU out-rebounded CU, 42-33.
Creighton returns to action on the road at Illinois State on Thursday. The Bluejays and Redbirds will tip off at Redbird Arena in Normal, Ill., at 7:05 p.m.