Tillie, Norvell lift No. 15 Zags over No. 25 Creighton 91-74
SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — Killian Tillie scored 22 points and Zach Norvell Jr. added 21 points, all in the second half, as No. 15 Gonzaga came back to beat No. 25 Creighton 91-74 on Friday night.
Silas Melson also scored 21 points and Johnathan Williams added 15 for Gonzaga (7-1).
Marcus Foster had 21 points for Creighton (5-2), which has already beaten No. 20 Northwestern and No. 23 UCLA and lost to No. 22 Baylor this season.
Gonzaga shot better than 62 percent in the second half to erase a 7-point halftime deficit.
Gonzaga went on a 20-4 run to open the second half and built a 57-48 lead. Creighton had five turnovers during the run.
Consecutive 3-pointers by Norvell put Gonzaga up 63-53.
Norvell hit two more 3s to push Gonzaga’s lead to 81-71 with less than 5 minutes left. Gonzaga gradually extended the lead. The Zags outscored the Bluejays 54-30 in the second.
The first half was nip and tuck for most of the 20 minutes. Creighton hit four consecutive 3-pointers late in the first to take a 34-29 lead.
Gonzaga made a run, but the Bluejays scored the last five points to take a 44-37 lead. They shot 58 percent in the first half, including 7 of 14 on 3-pointers, before cooling off in the second. Foster had 15 first-half points for Creighton.
The teams, both from Jesuit universities, have not played since 1977 and this is their first meeting in Spokane.
Gonzaga is 183-17 in the McCarthey Athletic Center since it opened in 2004.
Creighton: The Bluejays were playing their fourth ranked team in five outings. Their schedule appears to get easier going forward, as they have five consecutive home games against unranked opponents. The Bluejays, of the Big East, came in averaging 92.5 points per game, 10th in the nation.
Gonzaga: This figured to be the best non-conference home game on the Bulldogs’ schedule. Gonzaga has six players averaging at least 10 points per game. Starting guard Corey Kispert did not play because of an ankle injury.
Creighton hosts North Dakota on Tuesday.
Gonzaga plays No. 4 Villanova, another Big East team, at Madison Square Garden in the Jimmy V Classic on Tuesday.
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