McDermott leads No. 16 Creighton past California
Berkeley, CA (Sports Network) - Doug McDermott connected on 4-of-7 shots from beyond the arc en route to a season-high 34 points as No. 16 Creighton held off California, 74-64, at Haas Pavilion.
Jahenns Manigat added 11 points while Gregory Echenique contributed 10 points, 11 rebounds and five blocks for Creighton (10-1), which won its fourth straight.
"Our guys competed tonight, defensively especially," Creighton coach Greg McDermott said. "We didn't certainly play our best offensively, but a lot of that had to do with Cal."
Justin Cobbs paced the Golden Bears (6-3) with 18 points while adding seven assists and six rebounds.
Allen Crabbe finished with 14 points and seven rebounds in California's third consecutive defeat.
"I came in earlier today to do some shooting and I was feeling pretty good about it, but when I took the shots during the game they just weren't going in. It was just one of those days," said Crabbe.
McDermott led the way with eight points as Creighton opened the game with a 14-5 run to take the early lead, but the Golden Bears responded with a 9-2 push to get within 16-14 with a little over eight minutes remaining in the first half.
After the teams traded 3-pointers by McDermott and Richard Solomon to keep it a two-point game, a 7-2 spurt by the Bluejays put them on top, 26-19.
Back-to-back baskets by Tyrone Wallace brought California back within three and the teams traded buckets for the remainder of the first half until an Austin Chatman jumper in the closing seconds gave Creighton a 34-29 edge at the break.
Neither team would make a shot over the opening three minutes of the second half until Crabbe sank a jumper to bring the Golden Bears within 34-31.
Creighton answered with a 10-2 push to open up a double-digit lead, but California would not go away, as David Kravish's three-point play sparked an 8-0 run to close the Golden Bears' deficit back to 44-41.
An Echenique tip-in and a Crabbe jumper kept it a three-point game until McDermott, Grant Gibbs and Manigat dropped in consecutive 3-pointers to stretch Creighton's advantage up to 55-43 at the midpoint of the second half.
The Golden Bears later cut their deficit to 68-64 with 24 seconds left on a Cobbs layup, but they would not make another shot from the floor as Creighton closed the game out at the foul line.
California leads the all-time series, 2-1 ... It was the first meeting between the teams since 1943 ... Creighton shot 41 percent from the floor while holding California to 34.6 percent.