Dambrot: Zips lifeless in loss

ERIC OLSON AP Sports Writer Published:

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- A scheduling quirk that had Akron playing only two games in 20 days didn't help the Zips a bit when it came to preparing for 16th-ranked Creighton.

The Zips posted their lowest point total of the season in a 77-61 loss Sunday. They also made a season-low four 3-pointers and shot 42 percent overall.

"You could see those two games in three weeks hurt us," Akron coach Keith Dambrot said. "We just didn't have any juice and life."

Doug McDermott scored 30 points for Creighton, which broke away late in the first half.

McDermott, who made a career-high six 3-pointers, also had 30 points against Wisconsin last month for the Bluejays (9-1).

The Bluejays shot 48 percent and made 10 of 22 3-pointers.

"We knew we couldn't win a game in the mid-70s," Dambrot said. "We did a poor job guarding them. Not to take anything away from them offensively. They're very, very gifted. But we messed up a lot of simple rotations, and we had a hard time with McDermott."

Zeke Marshall and Nick Harney both had 12 points for Akron (4-3), which is 0-25 against ranked opponents since becoming a Division I program in 1980-81.

Creighton's Grant Gibbs had eight assists and no turnovers to go with seven points and six rebounds. Gibbs has 27 assists and one turnover in his last three games.

McDermott needed only eight attempts to make his six 3-pointers, but his best shot of the day might have come after the 7-foot Marshall was isolated on him.

McDermott bided his time with Marshall guarding him from behind. McDermott made a sudden move, shed Marshall and had a clear path to the basket for a layup. The smooth move brought many of the 16,310 fans to their feet.

Two possessions later, McDermott passed up a shot and sent a pass to Gibbs in the lane for a dunk.

After Akron closed within three points late in the half, the Bluejays used an 11-2 flurry that Will Artino finished with a jumper and tip-in for a 43-31 halftime lead.

Creighton has won two of the three meetings against the Zips of the Mid-American Conference. The Bluejays won 71-60 in the 2006 NIT and lost 76-67 at Akron in the 2011 BracketBuster.

TOP 25

NO. 21 UNLV 76, CALIFORNIA 75

BERKELEY, Calif. -- Quintrell Thomas grabbed Anthony Marshall's air ball under the basket and scored on a short hook shot with 1.2 seconds remaining to lift UNLV to the win.

The Runnin' Rebels led for most of the second half but trailed 75-74 following two free throws by California's Justin Cobbs with 11.9 seconds left. Marshall then rushed a long jumper that Thomas alertly grabbed and flipped in. Thomas was fouled on the play but missed the free throw. Justin Hawkins then blocked a 3-point attempt by Cobbs from midcourt as the buzzer sounded.

MAC

XAVIER 62, KENT STATE 55

CINCINNATI -- Semaj Christon and Brad Redford lifted the Xavier offense when the Musketeers needed it most.

Christon had 18 points and Redford came off the bench and made four consecutive 3-pointers to propel Xavier to a 62-55 win over Kent State on Sunday.

The Musketeers played without their leading scorer, Justin Martin, who suffered a mild concussion late in Thursday's loss to Vanderbilt. Martin has posted double-figure scoring in each of Xavier's first eight games.

"We knew we were going to be missing a talented player," Xavier coach Chris Mack said. "But we talked about how we were going to play on the defensive end."

WOMEN

NO. 20 OHIO STATE 81,

LAFAYETTE 41

COLUMBUS -- Tayler Hill scored 19 points and No. 20 Ohio State never trailed in defeating Lafayette 81-41 Sunday for its 28th consecutive victory at home.

Hill, who has scored in double figures in 42 straight games, hit a 3-pointer 20 seconds into the contest and the Buckeyes (6-2) never looked back. They led 38-16 at halftime and by as many as 47 points, 78-31, with 4:11 left in the game.

Ohio State dominated both inside and out, outscoring the Leopards (3-7) 40-10 in the paint while making 9 of 17 shots from 3-point range (52.9 percent). Hill was 4-for-7 behind the arc.

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