UConn vs. Creighton score, takeaways: Bluejays shock No. 1 Huskies, win first game ever vs. top-ranked team



College basketball’s longest winning streak came to a screeching halt on Tuesday as No. 15 Creighton beat No. 1 UConn 85-66 behind an offensive barrage from the Bluejays. It was Creighton’s first-ever win over a top-ranked opponent in seven tries, and it ended a 14-game winning streak for the Huskies, who have now lost 21 straight road games against ranked teams.

Creighton (20-7, 11-5 Big East) built its lead to 14 in the first half behind the hot shooting of point guard Steven Ashworth. The Utah State transfer scored 13 consecutive points for the Bluejays during an 18-2 run late in the first half. The spurt featured three 3-pointers from Ashworth, who scored 18 of his team-high 20 before halftime.

The Bluejays hit 8 of 15 from beyond the arc as a team during the half while the Huskies (24-3, 14-2) made just 1 of 7 and dug themselves their deepest halftime hole of the season. Creighton extended its lead to 23 in the second half before the Huskies mounted a brief rally highlighted by a Donovan Clingan dunk that brought UConn within 10 points with a dunk at the 4:39 mark. But the Bluejays held the Huskies to just 1 of 8 shooting from there to set up a court-storming in side the CHI Health Center.

When UConn beat Creighton 62-48 in the first meeting on Jan. 17, the Bluejays shot just 34.6% from the floor, which is their worst mark against a Big East foe this season. The Bluejays got just five points from their bench in that loss. On Tuesday, they shot 54.7% from the floor, including 14 of 28 from beyond the arc. Creighton also got 14 points from reserves Jasen Green and Francisco Farabello as it built an insurmountable advantage, despite a slow start for leading scorer Baylor Scheierman. 

Bracketology Implications

UConn entered as the projected No. 1 overall seed for the NCAA Tournament in Jerry Palm’s Bracketology after overtaking Purdue for the honor following the Boilermakers’ loss at Ohio State on Sunday. The Huskies gave it right back by stumbling at Creighton.

Purdue is returning to the projected No. 1 overall seed spot, according to Palm.

“UConn’s stay at No. 1 overall in the projected NCAA Tournament bracket was short-lived,” Palm said. “The Huskies’ loss to Creighton will drop them back behind Purdue to the second spot on the No. 1 line. The Boilermakers are back on top as the No. 1 overall seed for the same reason the NCAA Tournament selection committee put them there to begin with – the depth and quality of their wins.”

Creighton entered as a projected No. 4 seed, according to Palm. That would be the program’s best seed since 2014. Beating the top-ranked Huskies will only enhance Creighton’s resume, which is highlighted by a 6-4 record in Quad 1 games.

Creighton’s explosion

Creighton shooting is the best anyone has posted this season against UConn, which entered ranked 12th nationally in field goal defense. While Ashworth, Ryan Kalkbrenner and the bench led the early charge, the rest of the starters carried their share of the load in the second half. Trey Alexander scored 9 of his 16 in the second half, and Scheierman scored 9 of his 12 points in the final 6:21. Mason Miller scored all eight of his points after halftime. It was a total team effort from the Blujays, who finished 14 of 28 from 3-point range and committed just seven turnovers.

UConn goes cold

Creighton’s defense also deserves credit for holding UConn to 3-of-16 shooting from 3-point range. It was the fewest long-range makes in a game this season for the Huskies, who finished with only eight assists. Typically reliable outside shooters Cam Spencer and Alex Karaban combined to make just 1 of 6 from 3-point range, leaving Tristen Newton to carry much of the offensive load. It was a similar story in UConn’s last loss two months ago, a 75-60 defeat at Seton Hall to open Big East play. Karaban and Spencer combined to shoot just 1 for 11 from 3-point range in that game.





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