Matthew Dellavedova had 19 points, six rebounds and five assists as Saint Mary's held off Creighton 74-66 in a Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters game Saturday afternoon in Moraga, California.
Saint Mary's (24-5) scored the last eight points of the first half to take a 38-24 lead at the break. The Gaels scored inside on a consistent basis, finishing the period with 18 points in the paint, while also doubling up the Jays (22-7) on the glass 26-13.
Doug McDermott had 13 points at the half, but the Jays would shoot a season-low 29.6 percent. SMC was led by 10 points from Dellavedova, who also dished a team-best four assists.
The Bluejays went inside with added frequency early in the second half and Gregory Echenique stepped up, scoring CU's first seven points to get to within 43-31 after the first four minutes. McDermott's three-point play got CU to within nine.
The Gaels answered with a Dellavedova trey, a free throw by Jorden Page and a three-point play by Brad Waldow to push the lead back to 50-34. CU responded with a three-point play by Grant Gibbs and a trey by Ethan Wragge and just like that the lead was back down to 10.
Creighton also got to within 10 points with five minutes left, only to have Dellavedova drain a three-pointer to beat the shot clock and Jordan Giusti hit another runner as the shot clock expired to halt CU's momentum.
The Jays got to within eight twice in the final minute, but could not get over the hump as Saint Mary's inched closer to its sixth straight season of 25 wins or more.
McDermott scored 22 while Echenique (18) and Jahenns Manigat (11) also pitched in with double-figure scoring efforts for Creighton. In addition to Dellavedova's 19 points, Brad Waldow had a double-double (12 points, 12 rebounds) while Stephen Holt had 11 points.
After the starting the season 17-1, Creighton has gone 5-6 since January 19th.