St. John’s was unable to stop the dynamic duo of Marcus Foster and Khyri Thomas as they lost to Creighton 68-63, dropping to 0-9 in Big East play.
- Creighton 68 (16-5, 6-3 Big East)
- St. John’s 63 (10-11, 0-9)
- Final, Box Score
- Carnesecca Arena, Queens, NY
The St. John’s Red Storm keep finding ways to stay competitive in the Big East, but they were once again unable to finish the deal tonight against Creighton. It was the backcourt duo of Marcus Foster and Khyri Thomas that combined for 43 points and 15 rebounds as the Blue Jays hung on to win, 68-63.
Every time the Red Storm would cut into Creighton’s lead, which got down to three with 15 seconds left, it would be Foster or Thomas that would come up with a big shot. Foster had 24 points (10-for-19 shooting) while Thomas had 19 points in the win.
— Creighton Basketball (@BluejayMBB) January 24, 2018
For St. John’s, they had a lot of trouble just making shots in the first half as they made only eight of their 28 field goal attempts as they trailed 36-25 at the half. However, in the second half, there was a lot more ball movement and the offense had more of a flow and they were 15-for-28 from the floor (53.5 percent).
The leader of the offense during the second half was Justin Simon. Simon finished the night with 17 points, nine rebounds, seven assists, and three steals. Out of those 17 points, 12 of them came in the second half as he was finding ways to attack the basket. Also, he took good control of an offense that only had five turnovers for the entire game.
As for Creighton, a lot of their offense relied on the three-point shot. Out of the 48 shots they attempted in the game, 27 of them were from beyond the arc. Fortunately, for Greg McDermott’s squad, they made 11 of them, including four from Foster and from center Toby Hegner (16 points).
It was a rough night in the backcourt for Shamorie Ponds. The leading scorer for St. John’s was shut down by Thomas for most of the night and didn’t play much of the second half due to an injury. In the end, he had only seven points and made just three of his 11 shot attempts in the loss. This is what head coach Chris Mullin had to say about the injury after the game, courtesy of Jaden Daly from Daly Dose of Hoops:
Chris Mullin on Shamorie Ponds: "He's got a bruised quad. He got kneed in his quad. He'll get treatment tomorrow, and we'll go from there." #SJUBB
— Daly Dose Of Hoops (@DalyDoseOfHoops) January 24, 2018
Down low, the Red Storm were dominated on the glass as Creighton won the rebounding battle, 36-24. However, St. John’s saw Tariq Owens put up another strong night on offense. Owens had 14 points, five rebounds, a pair of blocks, and a pair of alley-oops as well. He has now scored 31 points in his last two games.
RIGHT BACK IN IT
— #BIGEASThoops (@BIGEASTMBB) January 24, 2018
While St. John’s had their shooting issues at times tonight, they were able to have a good night on the defensive end. Yes, they did give Creighton a lot of open looks from downtown. But, they were able to force 16 turnovers and got seven combined steals from Simon, Owens, and Marvin Clark II.
Once again, it was another close loss for the Red Storm as they have now lost seven games by seven points or fewer in Big East play. They are able to remain competitive against the top teams in the conference, but they just haven’t been able to make the big plays late.
Next Game: St. John’s will be back on the road Saturday afternoon when they make a visit to Hinkle Fieldhouse to take on the Butler Bulldogs (14-7, 4-4 Big East). You can watch the game at 2:30 p.m ET on FS1.