Forward Doug McDermott scored 32 points as No. 12 Creighton held off a second half surge by upset-minded DePaul to claim a 78-66 victory on Friday at Omaha’s CenturyLink Center.
Guard Brandon Young scored 16 points and forward Forrest Robinson added a career-high 11 as the Blue Demons (10-14, 2-9) cut a double-digit second half deficit to one point but ultimately dropped their sixth straight.
Guard Austin Chatman added 11 as the Blue Jays (19-3, 9-1 Big East) remained tied with Villanova for the conference lead Villanova beat Seton Hall 70-53 earlier Friday.
Creighton broke a 13-13 first half tie with a 13-2 run over a span of 4 minutes 22 seconds for a 26-15 lead with 9:36 showing. DePaul guard Billy Garrett cut the halftime deficit to single digits at 39-31 with a layup with 44 seconds remaining.
In the second half DePaul surged to within a point a 59-58 on guard Durrell McDonald’s layup with 7:35 to play, but Creighton replied with a 14-2 run over a the next five minutes including McDermott’s nine free throws and a layup for a 73-60 lead.
DePaul still leads the all-time series 15-9 but has not won since a 72-57 decision on Nov. 30, 2005. The Blue Demons have not beat a ranked team since 2008.
Creighton travels to St. John’s on Sunday while DePaul is until until Wednesday when it hosts Villanova at Allstate ArenaCopyright © 2015, RedEye