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The Creighton women's basketball team opens the 2013-14 season with Drake on Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 pm.
Courtesy: Mark Kuhlmann

Women's Basketball Opens 2013-14 at Drake

OMAHA, Neb. - The Creighton women's basketball team opens the 2013-14 season with a familiar foe as the Bluejays head to Des Moines, Iowa to take on the Drake Bulldogs on Friday, Nov. 8 at 7 pm.

11/8: at Drake (0-0) - 7:00 p.m.
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Twitter: @GoCreighton, @CreightonWBB

Creighton vs. Drake:
Drake leads the all-time series with the Bluejays, 37-24.  Creighton, however, has won the last three meetings.  Drake has claimed 21 of the 30 meetings in Des Moines.

Last Time vs. Drake (3-3-13):
W, 67-66 @ Creighton
Marissa Janning broke her own arena record with 29 points to lead the Jays to a 67-66 win over Drake. Down 39-30 early in the second half, Janning took the game over with 23 of the Jays 37 points in the period.

The two teams battled back and forth into the final minutes with Drake clinging to a slim 60-59 edge with 3:28 remaining. Creighton seized control behind a 6-0 run, courtesy of a layup from Sarah Nelson and two buckets by Janning, to take a 65-60 lead with 1:06 left.  Moments later, Janning sealed the win with two free throws with 35 seconds remaining.

Last Time at Drake (2-2-13):
W, 98-71 @ Drake
The Bulldogs set the pace in the opening moments of the contest as Drake jumped out to a 7-1 lead by the 18:14 mark.  Down 13-8 moments later, the Bluejays finally gained control of the game with a 14-2 run over the next four minutes to claim the lead, 22-15. Over the final 13 minutes of the opening period the Jays sank five more triples as Creighton took a 56-42 lead into the break.  The 56-point outburst was the most points scored by the Jays in a half since putting up 59 points at Siena on March 22, 2003.

Scouting the Bulldogs (0-0)
Creighton opens the 2013-14 season with a familar foe in Drake.  The Bulldogs and Bluejays offered two intense battles last season, with Creighton taking both contests.

Both teams return four starters from last season.  Drake’s offense primarily runs on the play of junior Kyndal Clark, who led the Bulldogs with 14.6 ppg last season.  She also distributed a team-high 111 assists.  

The production of post players Morgan Reid and Ashley Bartow will play a significant role in Friday’s contest.  This duo averaged 12.2 rebounds per game last season and Reid has always played some of her most inspired ball against the Bluejays.

Keys to the Game w/Drake:

  • Controlling Tempo: Drake wants to play at a frantic pace.  While the Jays can play fast, Creighton is a more efficient half-court team than the Bulldogs and would be better suited to slow the game a bit.
  • Transition defense:  The increased attention to fouls will force both teams to play defense more with their feet.  
  • Shot Selection: The two teams shot 66% (Creighton) and 45% (Drake) from the field in last season in Des Moines.  Expect the defenses for each teams to play much better, placing an emphasis on shot selection and offensive execution.
  • Inside-Out Game:  The Bluejays own a significant height advantage in the post.  As a result Creighton must pound the ball inside, to open up the three-point shot.

Season Opening Information

  • Creighton is 5-6 in season-openers under Jim Flanery, including 1-5 when opening on the road.  The Bluejays dropped their 2012-13 season opener to #12 Oklahoma, 69-48, at home.  Creighton’s last season-opener on the road was a 72-54 win over North Dakota on Nov. 11, 2011.
  • Creighton is 17-22 all-time in season openers, including 4-15 when opening the year on the road.

Exhibition Recap:
Creighton 77, Fort Hays State 47
As expected both teams struggled early as Creighton held a 3-2 edge at the first media timeout (15:25).  Creighton began to find its rhythm over the next five mintues, thanks in large part to freshman Brianna Rollerson.  The Omaha native scored eight straight Bluejay points to make it 11-4, draining all four shots she took.  Senior Sarah Nelson extended the lead to double-digits with a three-ball from the corner (14-4) with 9:42 remaining. The Bluejays pushed their lead to as much as 14 points (22-8) in the opening half, but Fort Hays State scored the final six points to make it 26-19 at the break.

The second half belonged to sophomore Marissa Janning as she scored 19 of her game-high 21 in the final 20 minutes.  Janning was 3-for-4 from behind the arc in the second half and also picked up three assists. Janning’s 21 points led all scorers, while Rollerson finished with 16 points.  

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