Team Profile: 2008 BracketBuster Recap: Creighton 65, Oral Roberts 64
The Creighton Bluejays survived a tough road test at Summit League-leading Oral Roberts, pulling out a 65-64 victory. The contest remained close the entire way, with Creighton leading by one at halftime and maintaining the margin only after a last-second defensive stand.
Oral Roberts’ only lead of the entire game came just before halftime after Robert Jarvis’ three-pointer gave them a 33-32 lead for less than one minute. Creighton’s advantage grew briefly to six points midway through the second half, but the host Golden Eagles just would not go away. With the game tied at 62, Booker Woodfox made a thee-pointer with :36 seconds remaining to give the Bluejays the lead. Following two Jarvis free-throws to cut the lead to one, Oral Roberts got the ball back and had two opportunities to win the game. However, Adam Liberty and Moses Ehambe each missed contested shots as Creighton held on for the victory.
Dane Watts had 18 points and 8 rebounds to lead Creighton. Woodfox finished with 15 points and P’Allen Stinnett added 14 for the visiting Bluejays. Oral Roberts was led by Robert Jarvis’ 17 points and Marcus Lewis notched a double-double with 10 and 10. Neither team shot particularly well from the field (41% Creighton and 38% Oral Roberts), but both took care of the ball despite constant defensive pressure.
The atmosphere for this contest was fabulous, as the ORU home crowd was in the game the entire way. Following the final defensive stand, the victorious Bluejays lept for joy and rushed to mid-court for a brief celebration. Both teams and their respective fanbases surely enjoyed the national exposure of the game and played with the intensity and aggression of March.
Within the big picture, Creighton has now earned itself a solid road win. Should the Bluejays win the Missouri Valley Tournament, this game will affect their NCAA Tournament seeding in a positive manner. However, it might also be important for the NIT resume as well.
For Oral Roberts, this loss does not have a huge negative impact. If ORU wins the Summit League tournament, its seeding will depend largely on the RPI rating of the conference.
For now, a solid win for Creighton that for Bluejays’ fans will hopefully give this young team some confidence for the last few weeks of the regular season and potentially the post-season.