Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Bluejays Secure NCAA Berth No. 25 Creighton Wins Mvc Crown

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Bluejays Secure NCAA Berth No. 25 Creighton Wins Mvc Crown

Article excerpt

Doug McDermott had 33 points and Antoine Young scored eight of his 14 in overtime as No. 25 Creighton survived an upset bid in the Missouri Valley Conference tournament championship with an 83-79 victory Sunday against Illinois State at Scotttrade Center in St. Louis.

Grant Gibbs added a career-high 20 points for second-seeded Creighton (28-5), which won the conference tournament for the seventh time in 14 seasons and earned its first NCAA bid since 2007.

The Bluejays were 3-0 against fourth-seeded Illinois State (20- 13), which beat top-seeded and 15th-ranked Wichita State in the semifinals, the first two wins by nine and 28 points.

Freshman Nic Moore had 20 points for Illinois State and drove the length of the court for a layup with 6.5 seconds to go in regulation that forced overtime. Young tried to duplicate that feat on the other end but missed with two seconds left and Gregory Echenique missed a tip-in at the buzzer.

Jackie Carmichael added 17 points and nine rebounds for Illinois State, which hasn't made the NCAA tournament since 1998. Tyler Brown had 16 points and John Ekey added 13.

McDermott, the conference player of the year, was potent inside and out, making 12 of 18 shots with three 3-pointers while exhausting an assortment of defenders. He broke the school's season scoring record set in 1968-69 in the first half and put Creighton on his back much of the second half, scoring 17 of the Bluejays' 19 points in one stretch.

The Bluejays led by nine points with 1:15 to go after Josh Jones' fastbreak dunk.

OTHER TOURNAMENT

* Colonial Athletic: Bradford Burgess scored 20 points and Virginia Commonwealth (27-6), a surprise Final Four participant a year ago, burst out to a 28-point lead, then had to hang on against a furious rally by George Mason (24-9), moving into the championship tonight with a 74-64 victory in Richmond, Va. …

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