Bluejays Blast Panthers, 74-48, in Women's Hoops

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McKenzie Fujan
Courtesy: Eric Francis
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa - Creighton shot 76.9 percent from the field in the second half as the Bluejays cruised to a 74-48 win over Northern Iowa at McLeod Center Friday night in a game televised by Fox Sports.  The Bluejays shot a season-high 59.6 percent in the game as all 11 Bluejays made at least one field goal in the 26-point road win.  The win was Creighton's fourth straight, while the loss was UNI's fourth consecutive.

Taylor Johnson led the Bluejays (16-11, 10-6 MVC) with 13 points off the bench, making 3-of-4 three-pointers, while McKenzie Fujan scored a career-high 12 points and tied her caree-rhigh with a game-high six assists.  Sarah Nelson logged her third straight double-double and her 11th of the season with 10 points and game-high 10 rebounds for the Bluejays.

UNI (15-11, 8-7 MVC) scored the first seven points of the game as the Bluejays were slow to get their offense in gear, missing five of their first six shots.  The Panthers led 19-17 with five minutes to play in the first half, but Creighton scored the final 10 points of the half as UNI missed its final eight shots from the field and did not make a field goal over the final 7:43 of the frame.

Creighton led 27-19 at the break, with nine Bluejays scoring in the first half.  Despite the eight point lead, no Bluejay scored more than four points in the first half.

The Jays took their first double-digit lead after a Carli Tritz free throw made the score 36-26 with less than four minutes off the clock in the second half.  UNI would climb within nine points one more time before the Bluejays scored 10 straight points to take a 48-29 lead with less than 10 minutes to play.

Creighton's lead was as large as 29 in the victory before the final read 74-48 and the Jays walked out of McLeod Center with their largest road win since winning by 26 at Evansville last January.

The Bluejays made 20-of-26 shots from the field after halftime to shoot 76.9 percent in that span and finish with their best shooting game of the season.  The Jays hit 31-of-52 shots (.596), including 7-of-16 (.438) from long range. CU out-rebounded UNI 39-26 and dished 21 assists on its 31 field goals.

Johnson scored nine of her 13 points in the second half, making three second-half three-pointers.  Not only did Fujan set a career-high with 12 points and tie her career-best with six assists, she did not have a turnover in the win.  The Bluejay bench out-scored the UNI reserves 34-6 as UNI played only eight players and CU had 11 players with at least one field goal.

Amber Kirschbaum was slowed by foul trouble for UNI, but still led the team with 14 points in 21 minutes.  UNI shot just 30.8 percent from the field and made only 3-of-21 (.143) three-pointers.

The Bluejays, now on their longest winning streak of the year, will look to win their fifth straight when they play at Bradley (14-13, 5-10 MVC) on Sunday afternoon at 2:05 pm.

NOTES: CU improved to 29-1 when shooting at least 50 percent from the field under head coach Jim Flanery ... Creighton's 47 points in the second half were its most points scored in a half this season ... The 26-point margin of victory equals the largest winning margin by the Bluejays on the road in MVC play in school history - CU also won by 26 at Evansville in both 2010 and 2011 ... The 59.6 shooting percentage was CU's best since shooting 61.1 percent against North Dakota on Dec. 20, 2010 ... The field goal percentage was CU's best in a road game since shooting 63.2 percent at Bradley on Feb. 8, 1996.
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