Omaha, NE – The Northwestern Wildcats will conclude their conference season with a trip to Omaha to take on the 23rd-ranked Creighton Bluejays at the CenturyLink Center.
This will be the fifth meeting between the programs. Northwestern holds a 3-1 advantage in the all-time series after winning last year's bout 65-52. The contest features two of the top three-point shooting teams in the nation. The Bluejays rank seventh with an average of 9.7 three-pointers per game, while the Wildcats are ninth with 9.5 per game.
The Wildcats are 10-1 after winning in their last three outings. Bill Carmody's squad lost its only game to nationally ranked Baylor. Northwestern has picked up impressive victories over LSU, Tulsa, Seton Hall, and Georgia Tech already this season. The Wildcats are receiving votes in both top 25 polls. Northwestern is known for playing "team" offense which has yielded results. The Wildcats rank second in the nation with a 1.81 assist-to-turnover ratio this season. As a team, Northwestern averages 73.4 points per game and allows just 63.4 per contest. The Wildcats shoot 45.5 percent from the floor, 36.7 percent from three-point range and 71.2 percent at the free throw line.
Senior forward John Shurna leads Northwestern in scoring (19.5 ppg), rebounding (5.7 rpg) and blocked shots (1.6 bpg). The All-American candidate has drained a team-best 31 three-point baskets, and tied a school-record with nine trifectas on Sunday vs. Eastern Illinois. Also averaging in double- figures is Drew Crawford, who scores 16.6 points per game and leads the team with 13 steals. Role players Luka Mirkovic and Dave Sobolewski have been chipping
Creighton is 9-1 after beating Tulsa 83-64 on Monday night. The Bluejays hope to continue their hot shooting as they made 58.6 percent of their shots from the field in the contest. Coach Greg McDermott's team has one of the most unstoppable offenses in the country. Creighton is ranked sixth in the nation in scoring and field goal percentage with 86 ppg on 51.6 percent shooting. The Bluejays lead the country in assists with 20.7 apg. The Bluejays' stellar offense has led them to victories over Iowa, San Diego State, and Nebraska. The only team to beat Creighton this year is Saint Joseph's.
Doug McDermott leads the MVC in scoring (25.2) and is second in the league in rebounding (8.6) this year. The sophomore forward, who has scored 20 or more points in his last nine games, is coming off a career-best 35 points on Monday at Tulsa. McDermott is joined in the starting lineup by senior guard Antoine Young ( 10.3 ppg, 4.3 apg) and Gregory Echenique (9.2 ppg, 1.6 bpg).