Kalkbrenner leads Creighton over No. 19 Providence 73-67

Sports

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Ryan Kalkbrenner scored 13 of his 21 points in the final 15 minutes, and Creighton ended No. 19 Providence’s nine-game win streak 73-67 Saturday after squandering a big second-half lead.

The Bluejays (10-8, 4-3 Big East) got 20 points from Trey Alexander and 19 from Baylor Scheierman.

Creighton was up 16 points two minutes into the second half before Providence went on a 25-9 run with Scheierman on the bench in foul trouble for most of it.

Bryce Hopkins’ 3-pointer from the wing tied it 54-all with eight minutes to play. Arthur Kaluma’s three-point play put Creighton back in front, Kalkbrenner scored six straight points and the Bluejays held Providence (14-4, 6-1) without a field goal for 4 1/2 minutes to regain control.

Hopkins had 20 points to lead the Friars, who entered with their longest win streak since 1988-89. Devin Carter added 13 points and Noah Locke had 12.

Creighton won for the first time in three games and improved to 3-4 against ranked opponents.

Scheierman, who scored 17 points in the first half, hit a 3 to break a 21-21 tie and begin a 20-8 spurt that sent the Bluejays to the locker room with a 41-29 lead.

Scheierman went to bench with fourth foul with 16 minutes left, giving the Friars the opening to begin their comeback.

This was Providence’s first visit to Omaha in two years. The regular-season game scheduled here last season was canceled because of a COVID-19 outbreak in the Friars’ program.

BIG PICTURE

Providence: The Friars were playing as a ranked team for the first time this season. They had won their previous three Big East road games but weren’t able to finish what would have been their biggest comeback in a win since overcoming a 19-point deficit against Butler last February.

Creighton: The Bluejays, fueled by a sellout crowd at CHI Health Center, improved to 8-1 at home.

SAY WHAT?

It was eerily quiet when Hopkins went to the free throw line early in the second half.

As he prepared to shoot, public address announcer Jake Ryan admonished fans, saying, “It’s OK to make noise during opponent free throws.”

UP NEXT

Providence visits No. 25 Marquette on Wednesday. The Friars beat the Golden Eagles 103-98 in double overtime at home Dec. 20.

Creighton visits Butler on Tuesday. The Bluejays beat the Bulldogs 78-56 at home Dec. 20.

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