OMAHA, Neb. — Maurice Watson Jr. scored 21 points to lead No. 8 Creighton to a 75-64 win over No. 12 Butler and matched its best start in program history on Wednesday night.
Creighton is 16-1 after 17 games this season, which equalled the club’s previous best two starts in 2002-03 when it went 29-4 during the regular season and in 2012-13 when the program finished its regular schedule 27-7.
Watson, who shot 9-of-14 from the floor also grabbed seven rebounds in the win at CenturyLink Center in Omaha.
Khyri Thomas added 14 points and tied his career-high with 12 rebounds, while Cole Huff finished with 10 points and six rebounds in the win for Creighton.
Justin Patton scored 10 for the Bluejays (16-1, 4-1 Big East), who dominated the first half to lead 47-27 at halftime after closing the opening period on a 13-4 run.
Avery Woodson was the only player to score in double-digit for Butler (14-3, 3-2 Big East) and he finished with 14 points and made four 3-pointers in his roll off the bench.
The club’s top scorer Kelan Martin shot 3-of-14 from the field overall for a season-low seven points and missed all eight shots in the first half.
“Kelan has struggled a little bit in league play,” Butler coach Chris Holtmann said. “We’ve got to work hard to get Kelan playing better on both ends.”
Holtmann also praised the performance of Creighton, citing them as a Final Four team.
“I think they can certainly make a Final Four, I think they can play for a national championship,” he added. “I thought that as soon as I started watching them and preparing for them. There is zero ceiling for this Creighton team.”
As a team, Creighton, which leads the nation in field goal percentage at 53.8 percent, shot 55.4 percent from the floor in the win on Wednesday night.
The Bulldogs shot 41.3 percent overall and 32 percent from 3-pointer in the defeat.
Creighton will host Truman State on Saturday afternoon.
Butler returns to action on Saturday at home against No. 15 Xavier.
Other College Basketball AP Top 25 Scores
Wednesday, Jan. 12
No. 11 NORTH CAROLINA 93, WAKE FOREST 87
No. 14 LOUISVILLE 85, PITTSBURGH 80
MICHIGAN ST. 65, No. 24 MINNESOTA 47