Creighton just this week wrapped up their fourth game of the season and it resulted in
their first loss of this young season, a 73-72 win for the Kansas Jayhawks. Many fans are
wondering if much should be read into this loss at all.
It was Creighton’s first real test of the season, and some players just were not themselves
for the game, including Preseason All American Marcus Zegarowski.
Marcus playing just his first game against a ranked team since tearing his meniscus
dropped sixteen and four assists while going five of fourteen from the field. Zegarowski is still
knocking off some of the rust, and trying to be effective in games but just is not much of the
Creighton put themselves in a position to lose by doing a few things. The first of which is
shooting nine of eighteen from the free throw line as a team. If both teams were given all of their
points for missed free throws then Creighton would have won by two points.
The other problem Creighton faced was their inability to rebound well against Kansas’
larger lineups. Kansas out rebounded Creighton forty-one to thirty-one, which allowed many
opportunities for second chance buckets including Christian Braun’s banked in three with a few
minutes to go.
It is hard to win basketball games when you can not win the rebounding battle, make free
throws and shoot inefficiently from three. Creighton’s biggest strength, their three point shooting
ability, worked against them because of their inefficiencies from behind the arc.
One of the few bright spots for Creighton was the performance of Denzel Mahoney.
Mahoney had some great games last year off the bench put after being put into a starting role this
year he has delivered so far.
Mahoney had nineteen points and five rebounds, all while raining in three three point
shots. Denzel was singlehandedly keeping Creighton alive in the final few minutes of the game.
The amazing play from Mahoney so far this season could be very important down the stretch of
conference play in a loaded Big East conference.
One of the things to take away from the game Tuesday was Creighton’s ability to stay
competitive while playing poorly. Creighton did not do much well during that game, but they
managed to keep it competitive enough to potentially send it to overtime with some free throws
in the final seconds of the game, which were missed.
Not the way Creighton intended on the game ending, but plenty to take away from such a
sloppy game in a tough place to play. Creighton will look to bounce back Friday against
unranked Nebraska on the road.