OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Doug McDermott scored 18 of his 23 in the first half, and No. 11 Creighton rode a fast start to an 80-51 victory over Saint Joseph’s on Saturday.
Gregory Echenique added 16 points and six rebounds for the Bluejays (7-1), who bounced back after being upset by Boise State on Wednesday.
Langston Galloway scored 10 points to lead the Hawks (4-2), who played their first true road game.
Saint Joseph’s season-scoring leader Carl Jones, who had 29 points in a win over Creighton last season, was held to nine.
The Bluejays played their best half of the season and led 47-20 after breaking the game open with 12- and 13-point runs. They shot 57 percent, had assists on 13 of their first 17 field goals, and converted 10 turnovers into 16 points.
McDermott made four of his first five 3-pointers and scored 18 points in less than 12 minutes. He finished 5 of 7 on 3s and added six rebounds and three assists.
Echenique was 7 of 9 from the field and is 31 of 42 for the season (73.8 percent). Grant Gibbs had nine assists.
Saint Joseph’s shot a season-low 38 percent from the field and committed a season-high 17 turnovers in its most lopsided loss since a 95-58 defeat at Charlotte in February 2010.
McDermott and his teammates played inspired ball from the outset after coming out flat against Boise State.
He recorded his first assist when he passed up a shot from the top of the key and fed Echenique in the post for a three-point play. As Echenique’s shot went down, McDermott turned and let fly a giant fist pump like a baseball umpire calling a runner out on a close play.
Echenique had his way inside, overpowering anyone the Hawks put up against him. He threw down a couple of dunks during the 13-0 run that made it 39-10.
After allowing Boise State to shoot 60 percent, the Bluejays held Saint Joseph’s to 30 percent in the first half.
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