Villanova and Creighton will meet again for the second time this season, when the Bluejays head over to the Finneran Pavilion on Wednesday night.
Creighton is currently 13-9 overall and 4-5 in the Big East and just came off a win against Xavier. The Wildcats (18-4) are looking to get another win under their belt to remain undefeated in the Big East conference. The last time these two teams met the Wildcats were victorious in a 90-78 win, but this win didn’t come easily for them and the Cats found themselves trailing after the first half.
Last season, the ‘Cats fell to Creighton in overtime during their second meeting. This year, the Cats hope to use the momentum they have gained since suffering two early season losses against the Kansas Jayhawks and Penn Quakers, to defeat the Bluejays. Most recently, the Cats were able to defeat longtime rivals Georgetown and give them the third longest winning streak in the country, behind Tennessee (16) and Washington (11).
As for Creighton, their team showed promise in their win against Xavier on Sunday, but their injury list is continuing to grow as the season looms on. Marcus Zegarowski is out with a hand fracture as a result of the Sunday victory. Meanwhile, Connor Cashaw deals with a shoulder injury and Damien Jefferson continues to rehab his ankle post-surgery. Sunday’s victory over Xavier revealed the team that Creighton can be, but with injuries, this team is continuing to have to readjust each week.
Creighton’s season has been filled with highs and lows. They have played some strong teams such as Nebraska and Clemson, and their early-season victories looked promising for the squad. However, with just nine games left in the regular season for the Bluejays, the team will need to step it up to improve their Big East record, which is currently tied with St. John’s and Georgetown at 4-5. A win against Nova could give the Bluejays the confidence they need going into their next few games.
Martin Krampelj will be a player to watch after dropping 23 points on Sunday in just 24 minutes played. The loss of Marcus Zegarowski may reveal a hole in the roster, as he was able to put up 13 points on Sunday. Hopefully, players like Mitchell Ballock and Davion Mintz will step up with the loss of the freshman guard.
The Villanova Wildcats have been on a roll and they are looking promising, especially after Gillespie’s career game (30 pts) against the Hoyas on Sunday. The Cats are starting to reveal to everyone the type of second-half team they can be when they start having guys like Phil Booth spark a 16-2 run to turn the game around.
Pashcall continues to remain strong and consistent after putting up 24 points Sunday, including 6 rebounds. Georgetown gave Villanova a tough battle and hopefully that game gave them some things to work on in practice leading up to the Creighton game.
With all this being said, it looks like the Cats have many guys they can rely on to put up points, both young and old. Although the Bluejays were able to take down Nova during their second match last year, the odds seem to be in Villanova’s favor.
Tip-off is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday.