College hoops roundup: Trey Alexander scores 20 to lead No. 8 Creighton in 105-54 rout of Florida A&M
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Creighton's motto under Greg McDermott has always been “Let It Fly.”
Did the Bluejays ever in their opener against overmatched Florida A&M on Tuesday night.
The Rattlers chose to clog the middle and limit All-Big East center Ryan Kalkbrenner's offensive opportunities, and the Bluejays made them pay in a 105-54 rout.
Creighton hit 18 3-pointers — more than in all but one game during its NCAA Elite Eight season in 2022-23 — and nine players had at least one assist in as polished an opening performance as McDermott has seen in his 14 seasons.
“The unselfish core of this team was really on display tonight,” he said.
Trey Alexander scored 18 of his 20 points in the first half, and the starters were done for the night eight minutes into the second half.
Steven Ashworth, a Utah State transfer who shot 43.4% on 3s to rank sixth nationally last season, made 5 of 7 from distance and finished with 17 points. Baylor Scheierman was 3 of 8 on 3s and had 15 points. Virginia transfer Isaac Traudt was 3 of 8 on 3s from off the bench and had 12 points.
“The unselfishness, I'd like to tell you that's coaching,” McDermott said. “We have unselfish guys, almost to a fault. Early we turned down some shots we didn't need to turn down to make an extra pass.”
Creighton had turnovers on its first two possessions and Scheierman hit the side of the backboard with a shot before Ashworth's 3-pointer and Alexander's layin started a 22-4 run.
Creighton was up by as many as 32 points in the first half and 56-27 at the break.
Alexander was 7 of 8 from the field and had five assists and four turnovers in a team-high 26 minutes.
“At the beginning of the game I kind of saw some coverages I hadn't seen before, but I was able to get downhill pretty early and shots were falling, which is always a plus,” Alexander said.
Keith Lamar had 16 points to lead the Rattlers, who lost four of their top five scorers from last season.
Mason Miller and Ashworth made their first starts for Creighton. Miller took over at power forward for Arthur Kaluma, who transferred to Kansas State, and Ashworth replaced point guard Ryan Nembhard, who transferred to Gonzaga.
Kalkbrenner had a quiet opener. Shannon Grant, the Rattlers' 6-foot-10, 300-pounder, was assigned to Kalkbrenner and held him in check early. Kalkbrenner took only three shots in the first half and five for the game. He had nine points and four rebounds.
“If they're going to plug it up, and they're going to go double it, then we're going to go get 38 3-point shots,” McDermott said. “Teams like Florida A&M, they don't necessarily have a guy who can match up with him one-on-one. They provided him some help. If they're going to do that, then we're going to cast up some 3s, and we're pretty confident in our ability to shoot it.”
Florida A&M: The Rattlers, picked 11th in the 12-team SWAC after going 7-22 last season, take their lumps for a paycheck this time of year. They play seven Power Five opponents on the road before New Year's.
Creighton: Ten players suited up because of injuries and redshirt decisions. All of them scored.
Florida A&M: visits Nebraska on Thursday.
Creighton: hosts North Dakota State on Saturday.
Wyoming wins 104-56 over Northern New Mexico
LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Sam Griffin scored 23 points to help Wyoming defeat Northern New Mexico 104-56 on Tuesday night in a season opener.
Griffin shot 8 for 9 (5 for 5 from 3-point range) and 2 of 3 from the free throw line for the Cowboys. Akuel Kot added 20 points while shooting 6 for 10 (1 for 4 from 3-point range) and 8 of 8 from the free throw line, and he also had six assists and three steals. Cam Manyawu was 5 of 8 shooting and 3 of 7 from the free throw line to finish with 13 points, while adding 10 rebounds and five assists.
Emmanuel Taban led the way for Northern New Mexico with 15 points. Malek Malual added nine points and Joziah Ramos finished with nine points.
Wyoming plays Saturday against Cal Poly at home.
No. 20 Colorado women back up win over No. 1 LSU by beating Le Moyne 97-38
BOULDER, Colo. (AP) — Maddie Nolan and Frida Formann scored 15 points apiece, Aaronette Vonleh added a double-double and No. 20 Colorado followed up it's season-opening win over No. 1 LSU with a 97-38 romp past Le Moyne 97-38 on Wednesday night.
The Buffaloes (2-0), who made 10 3-pointers and shot 53% in upending LSU 92-78 in Las Vegas on Monday, followed up with 11 3s and 53% shooting against the Dolphins (0-2) at home.
Vonleh had 13 points and 11 rebounds. Nolan, a graduate transfer from Michigan, was 5 of 7 from 3-point range. Sarah-Rose Smith, a senior transfer from Missouri, came off the bench to score 10 points.
Colorado scored the first 10 points of the game and led 19-2 in the middle of the first quarter.
Formann had 12 points in the first half when the Buffs took a 52-21 lead and outscored Le Moyne 27-9 in the third quarter.
The Buffs finished with 42 points off of 25 Le Moyne turnovers, were a plus-17 on rebounds and had 29 assists on 39 baskets.
Lytoya Baker scored 18 points for the Dolphins, who went 3 of 19 from 3-point range and shot 30% overall.