St. John’s basketball blitzed by Creighton, remains winless in Big East

St. John's basketball (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)
St. John's basketball (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images) /

The St. John’s basketball team was steamrolled by Creighton in the second half.

It was a game that started ugly, was cleaned up, and finished uglier then it started for the St. John’s basketball team.

Finding themselves in a 16-point hole in the opening nine mines of the game, the Red Storm (5-3, 0-3 Big East) were able to dig themselves out of its hole, cutting its deficit to just three late in the first half.

Creighton (5-2, 1-1 Big East) was able to score the final four points of the first half to take a 41-34 lead into the break.

Both teams traded baskets in the second half and St. John’s trailed 52-50 with a chance to tie or take the lead.

Marcellus Earlington caught the ball on the right wing and traveled before putting the ball on the floor, giving possession back to the Blue Jays.

Since that point, Creighton outscored the Johnnies, 42-26 in 14 minutes, en route to its 94-76 victory.

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Greg McDermott‘s team shot 22-of-32 (68.8-percent) from the field ad 6-of-8 (75.0-percent) from 3-point range in the second half.

For the game Creighton shot 56.7-percent from the floor and 56.5-percent from 3-point range.

“We need to take a lot more pride in our defense and be more physical,” head coach Mike Anderson said.

In the midst of its massive second half run, 7-foot freshman Ryan Kalkbrenner was a thorn in the side of the Johnnies, ending the night with 15 points and five rebounds in 15 minutes.

Creighton out-rebounded St. John’s 44-26 and outscored the Johnnies 42-30 in the paint.

Big East Preseason Player of the Year Marcus Zegarowski led the Blue Jays with 20 points while Damien Jefferson fell two assists shy of a triple-double with ten points, ten rebounds, and eight assists.

“We have to win with our defense,” Anderson explained.

St. John’s was paced by sophomore Julian Champagnie who ended the night with 17 points on 5-of-13 shooting while four members of the Red Storm were able to reach double-figures.

St. John’s basketball faces a daunting challenge ahead.

After its brutal loss on Sunday against Georgetown (3-3, 1-0 Big East), the Johnnies will have a chance at revenge this coming Sunday.

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Patrick Ewing and the Hoyas will make the trip to Queens where St. John’s must play desperate for a win as the No. 7 Villanova Wildcats (6-1, 2-0 Big East) loom on December 30.

“Every game is a big game, we will let this [loss] hurt until midnight and then go back to work,” the St. John’s head coach said.

Tipoff between the Red Storm and the Hoyas is scheduled for 6:30pm EST (Fox Sports 1).