Feb. 1, 2014
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Sophomore guard Caroline Coyer led four Wildcats in double figures with 19 points and the Villanova Wildcats tallied a third straight win with a 68-54 home victory over the Creighton Bluejays. With the win, the Wildcats improve to 16-5 overall and 6-4 in Big East play, while Creighton falls to 13-9 overall and 7-3 in conference action.
Creighton led 11-5 at the 14:28 mark, when the Wildcats went on a 9-2 run to take a 14-13 advantage. Coyer led the Villanova spurt with six points, including a three-point field goal, a pull-up jumper and a foul shot.
Villanova controlled the play over the last 8:21 of the first half and outscored the Bluejays, 18-9, the rest of the way to take a 38-27 lead into intermission. Back-to-back buckets by junior forward Taylor Holeman started the Villanova run. Coyer scored on a baseline jumper and then buried a triple to increase her team's lead from 24-21 to 29-21 with 5:03 on the clock.
After Sarah Nelson missed a three attempt for Creighton, Wildcat junior forward Lauren Burford connected on a trifecta to increase Villanova's lead to 32-21. On the Wildcats next possession, senior guard Devon Kane made two free throws to give Villanova its largest lead of the half at 34-21 at the 3:33 mark.
Bluejay guard McKenzie Fujan made two free throws for Creighton to begin the second half and Villanova's lead was down to single digits at 38-29. Following the Creighton foul shots, Villanova junior center Emily Leer drained a three from the corner, Kane converted both a driving lay-up and a 15-foot jump shot. The seven straight points by Villanova gave the Wildcats a 45-29 advantage.
Fujan made two more free throws that ended the Wildcat 7-0 spurt, before Villanova ran off six consecutive points to reach its largest lead of the game at 52-31 with 11:44 to play. The six Villanova points included a trifecta by Leer, a baseline jumper by Holeman and two Coyer free throws.
Creighton made one last run at the Wildcats and closed the 21 point deficit to a 58-45 game at the 5:36 mark. Villanova ended the Bluejay comeback hopes when Coyer made two free throws and Holeman drained a 12-foot jump shot. Holeman's bucket gave the Wildcats a 62-45 advantage with 4:08 remaining in the game.
In the win, Coyer scored 19 points on 5-of-10 shooting from the field, including a 2-of-5 effort from three-point range and a 7-of-8 performance from the free throw stripe. She also added a game-high six assists. Kane and Holeman scored 14 points, while Burford added 10 points. Holeman was 7-of-9 from the field and had seven rebounds, while Kane was 5-of-8 from the floor and registered five assists and three steals.
Nelson led Creighton with a double-double with 26 points and 11 rebounds, while Fujan added 12 points.
For the game, Villanova shot 52.2 percent from the field (24-of-46), 30.0 percent from three-point range (6-of-20) and 82.4 percent from the free throw line (14-of-17), while Creighton was 16-of-49 from the floor (32.7%), 6-of-16 from long distance (37.5%) and 16-of-22 from the charity stripe (72.7%). The Bluejays owned a 33-27 advantage on the backboards. Villanova was charged with nine turnovers, while Creighton had 13 turnovers.
Villanova returns to action on Wednesday, Feb. 5, when the Wildcats travel to Providence. Tip-off is set for 7 p.m.
NOTES: Villanova and Creighton spilt the season series with the Bluejays winning 65-58 at home on Dec. 28...In the last three games combined, Villanova has held the opposition to 25.6 percent shooting (19-of-74) in the first half...Lauren Burford has made at least one three-point field goal in 18 of the 20 games she has played in...The Wildcats had a single digit turnover game for the 12th time in 21 games...Devon Kane has scored double figures in nine of the last 10 games and 14 times overall...Villanova improves to 5-3 at home with today's win...Caroline Coyer has netted double figures in 14 of the 21 games this year...Katherine Coyer played a career-high 37 minutes in today's game...Today was the third time this year that Villanova shot over 50.0 percent from the field.