Evansville gets past Creighton
Evansville, IN – Kenny Harris scored 15 points and Colt 57 upset of No. 17 Creighton on Tuesday.
The Purple Aces (12-12, 7-7 MVC) had lost three of four coming in, but outscored Creighton 13-1 over the final five minutes to earn the win. Ryan Sawvell chipped in 12 points and seven rebounds.
"Our execution could be better, but I'm not sure the effort can be any better," Evansville head coach Marty Simmons said.
Doug McDermott scored 21 points for the Blue Jays (21-4, 11-3), who have lost two in a row on the heels of an 11-game winning streak. It marks the first time this season that they have dropped consecutive games. Austin Chatman and Gregory Echenique chipped in 11 and 10 points, respectively.
The Blue Jays took a 56-52 lead on McDermott's layup with 5 1/2 minutes to play, but managed just one point the rest of the way.
The Purple Aces, who had lost six straight to Creighton, took advantage. Sawvell followed McDermott's bucket with a pair from the foul line and Harris tied it seconds later with a jumper.
Ryan and Harris continued the run with back-to-back baskets, making it 60-56. Creighton, meanwhile, failed to answer, as McDermott was off on a jumper and Antoine Young missed a shot from the field and two free throws before finally making 1-of-2 from the line with under a minute remaining.
The Blue Jays went 0-for-3 from the field the rest of the way, while the Purple Aces made five of their final six free throws to secure the win.
The Purple Aces didn't just rely on a late push, instead competing with vigor throughout. They held a 29-19 lead late in the opening half before Creighton closed with a 12-4 run to trail 33-31 at the break.
McDermott, the MVC's leading scorer, had 12 points in the first, while Ryan paced the Purple Aces with eight.
Creighton leads the all-time series, 25-10...McDermott entered Tuesday ranked third in the nation in scoring at 23.4 points per game, while Ryan entered leading Evansville at 20.8 ppg...Creighton went just 4-of-22 from beyond the arc.