Watson scores season-high 25, No. 10 Creighton beats Huskers
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) -- Creighton's 90-points-a-game offense didn't show up until late against Nebraska.
No problem. The 10th-ranked Bluejays were still more than good enough to beat in-state rival Nebraska again.
Maurice Watson Jr. scored a season-high 25 points, Cole Huff added 13 and Creighton dominated the second half in a 77-62 victory Wednesday night.
"We had to win kind of an ugly game, and they were trying to make us play that way," Bluejays coach Greg McDermott said. "That's probably the fewest fast-break points we've had all season. I like to think our pace wears you out over time, and we had a hard time with it."
The Bluejays (9-0) have won 15 of 18 meetings with the Cornhuskers (5-4), including the last six by double digits.
Tai Webster had 16 points and Ed Morrow had 13 rebounds for the Huskers, who trailed 31-30 at halftime but went scoreless for 6 1/2 minutes in the second half. Creighton bolted to a 51-37 lead, and in the last 3 minutes it was a 21-point game.
"It makes me disappointed and sick to my stomach we couldn't foster a better fight," Huskers coach Tim Miles said. "I thought we were in good shape until Tai picked up his fourth foul, and then we went on a long, long drought."
Watson carried the scoring load in the Bluejays' first true road game as Nebraska clamped down on Marcus Foster and Justin Patton. Foster had seven points and Patton had nine, both season lows.
The Cornhuskers' defense left driving lanes open for Watson, and the senior point guard took advantage. He made 10 of 20 shots. He's never taken more than 21 shots in his career.
"My teammates kept saying for me to go, go go, and I kind of got comfortable," Watson said.
The Huskers shot 32.4 percent overall and were just 3 of 22 on 3-point attempts.
"We took too many of them," Webster said. "Like Coach Miles says: 'Love the 2, like the 3.' That's when we're at our best."
Creighton's Toby Hegner dunked with 3 1/2 minutes left, prompting the small contingent of Bluejays fans to chant "C-U, C-U" as the Nebraska faithful began heading to the exits. Big Red fans who remained booed Davion Mintz's fast-break dunk in the final seconds.
The victory allowed Creighton to tie the all-time series 25-25.
THE BIG PICTURE
Creighton: The Bluejays' first road trip was a bumpy ride. The flow was choppy, and they couldn't get moving at the speed they like until after the game was decided.
Nebraska: The Huskers are not a good offensive team to begin with, and they were worse than that against the Bluejays. "You can't be that inept on offense and expect to win," Miles said.
PATTON KEPT IN CHECK
Patton, the Bluejays' 7-foot redshirt freshman, was held under 10 points for the first time in nine games. He did have eight rebounds, three blocked shots and a steal.
"It's his first time playing in front of a crowd totally against us, and he'll learn from it," McDermott said.
HE SAID IT
"If this doesn't hurt you, nothing does. If you're (home) tonight in another 20 minutes and playing video games until 1 a.m., you don't really care. You've got to hate losing. We've got teach them how to win, too." - Miles.
Creighton is No. 10 for the second straight week and is in no danger of dropping in the Top 25 after a convincing win over Nebraska and a near gimme at home on Friday against Longwood.
Creighton hosts Longwood on Friday.
Nebraska visits No. 3 Kansas on Saturday.
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