Creighton run comes to an end as Gonzaga continues its perfect season
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WOWT) - The Creighton Bluejays’ run in the NCAA Tournament ended Sunday in the Sweet 16 after a 83-65 loss to Gonzaga, which moved to a perfect 29-0.
Despite Creighton playing well offensively in the first half, the Bulldogs led by 10 at the half, and that was with Corey Kispert only sitting at two points.
Marcus Zegarowski led all scores with 13 at the break. He hit three triples in the first half.
The problem was the rest of the team was 0-8 from distance at that point.
There was a first half stretch when the Bluejays had nine straight misses while Zegarowski and Christian Bishop were both on the bench.
Gonzaga really turned it on in the second half.
Drew Timme lead the Zags with 22 points.
Zegarowski led CU with 19.
They now move on to the Elite 8.
For Creighton, it’s the end of a very successful two-year run with this particular group.
The Jays reached the regional semifinal game for the first time since 1974 and made it to the Sweet 16 for the first time in the tournament’s current structure.
Mitch Ballock, Damien Jefferson, Denzel Mahoney are all seniors who could return due to the NCAA’s eligibility rules for this year, but it’s very unclear if any of them will exercise that option.
Last offseason, Jefferson and Mahoney declared for the NBA Draft before both decided to return to school for another season.
Marcus Zegarowski and Christian Bishop are both juniors who played at elite levels this season and, at a very minimum, could declare for the draft to speak with NBA coaches and scouts and learn the process.
The core of the team could look very different next season.
That’s a discussion for another time.
Right now, the Bluejays should be celebrated for what they’ve accomplished.
Especially when you consider how the group stayed together, focused, and committed to each other after facing plenty of adversity the last two seasons.
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