In the last of the Bracket Busters, the Gaels picked up another solid victory this afternoon against the BlueJays. The Gaels never fell behind today. They were solid in all aspects of their game. St. Mary’s moves up to 24-5 overall and are now 13-2 in the WCC. The Gaels only WCC loses are against number three ranked Gonzaga. St. Mary’s is now 15-1 at home this season. The question becomes has St. Mary’s done enough to earn an at large spot in the big dance?
In the first half, the Gaels came out ready to play. They got the first score off a Jordan Page three pointer and would never fall behind in the game. With 11:07 left in the first half the Gaels built their lead to seven up 18-11. Creighton cut the lead to three with 9:56, 18-15. The Gaels answered with a 6-0 run and went up by nine with 8:45 left.
The BlueJays rallied back and cut the Gael lead to six, 30-24 with 3:13 to play in the half. The Gaels once again answered back by closing the half with an 8-0 run. They sent the Jays to the locker room in need of re-grouping down 38-24.
Statistically for the half, the Gaels went 14-31 (45.2%) from the floor and were 4-10 (40%) from three point land. Leading the way for the Gaels was Matthew Dellavedova with 10. Brad Waldow, Stephen Holt, and Beau Levesque each put up five. The Gaels hit 18 points from the paint. The bench had 11.
For the BlueJays, they went 8-27 (29.6%) from the floor and 3-13 (23.1%) from threes. Poor shooting set the tone for the Jays in the 1st half. They were well off their 50.8% nationally ranked number two shooting percentage. At the top of the scoring list for the Jays was Doug McDermott who had 13. Gregory Echenique followed with eight.
The Jays put up 10 from the paint. Their bench had three.
In the second half, the Gaels lead by double digits almost throughout. Creighton cut the lead to nine, 43-34 with 15:21 to play in the game. The Gaels held onto a double digit lead until .48 second left in the game where the Jays closed the lead to eight, 70-62. The gap was closed off of several fouls, full court pressure, and a failed desperation attempt by the BlueJays to get back into the game. The Gaels kept the lead, held strong, and grounded the BlueJays in a 74-66 victory.
For the game, the Gaels went 24-55 (43.6%) from the floor and 8-22 (36.4%) from beyond the arc. They went 18-22 from the line (81.8%) and have now had two games in a row over 80%
The lead scorer for the Gaels was Matthew Dellavedova with 19. He hit 5-10 from three point land and managed five assists. Stephen Holt put up 13. Brad Waldow had 12 and Mitchell Young had 11. The Gaels had 26 from the paint. The Bench had 13.
Off the bench, Beau Levesque had five but suffered from foul trouble. Jordan Giusti again played solid defense when needed for the Gaels.
For the BlueJays they ended the night 21-51 (41.2%) from the floor and 5-18 (27.8%) from beyond the arc. Doug McDermott lead the scoring with 22. Gregory Echenique had 18. Jahenns Manigat had 11. the BlueJays put up 32 from the paint. Their bench had eight.
Creighton drops to 22-7 for the year and is still hoping to play in the upcoming big dance.
The Gaels next face Pepperdine on the road at 8:00pm February 27th.