Doug McDermott and his dad felt differently about the younger McDermott’s performance Friday night.
His dad’s opinion, though, carries more weight. Greg McDermott is No. 14 Creighton’s coach.
Doug had 30 points and eight rebounds to lead Creighton past Wisconsin 84-74 for a spot in the Las Vegas Invitational final.
"I got off to a slow start (shooting). I missed a lot of shots I normally make," Doug McDermott said. "I need to get to the post. I thought I did a great job in the post. I felt really comfortable being patient and making reads out of the post."
Creighton (5-0) will play Arizona State in the championship game Saturday. The Sun Devils beat Arkansas 83-68.
"We let Doug go to work," Greg McDermott said. "He made really good decisions. He took what the defense gave him. His pace was better offensively tonight."
Ethan Wragge had 17 points, including a 3-pointer that put Creighton up for good, 61-60 with 7:40 left at the Orleans Arena.
Austin Chatman added a career high 14 points for Creighton, which shot 62 percent from the field in the second half and 88 percent from the free throw line for the game.
"When you get these opportunities, you’ve got to take advantage of these opportunities," the coach said of his reserves, who outscored Wisconsin’s subs 15-0 in the second half. "We matched their toughness. We wanted to make a statement. Anytime you play a Big Ten team, it’s a big game. Wisconsin is unbelievably well coached. When you beat one (coach Bo Ryan’s teams), you earned it."
Jared Berggren led the Badgers (3-2) with a career-high 27 points and seven rebounds. Ryan Evans had 15 points and eight rebounds, while George Marshall added 13 points.
"I thought we competed pretty well, but McDermott was too tough for us," Ryan said. "He has a feel for the game. He makes other guys look like they haven’t played before. He’s a coach’s delight and his coach happens to be his dad."
Wisconsin will play Arkansas in the third-place game.
The Bluejays were 22 of 25 from the free-throw line and outrebounded Wisconsin 40-34.
Creighton trailed 39-38 at halftime. They took a 43-41 lead and went up 55-48 with 13:04 to go. But Wisconsin responded with a 12-3 run before Creighton regained the advantage. The Bluejays later built their largest lead at 11 with less than a minute left.
"We’ll dissect their film tonight and show (the players) tomorrow morning," coach McDermott said of Arizona State. Their guards are a handful. We’re definitely facing a totally different team. We’ll have to use our bench a little bit earlier. Only half the work is done here."
There were seven ties and 13 lead changes in the first half. The Badgers’ biggest advantage was 12-6 with 15:32 until halftime.
"We didn’t do a good job of taking away from them what they do well," Berggren said. "We weren’t getting enough stops. We definitely wanted to contain them better defensively."
This is the first time the teams have met since 1949, when the Badgers won 75-39. Both coaches faced off in the 2005 NCAA tournament in Oklahoma City. Ryan’s Wisconsin team defeated McDermott’s Northern Iowa squad 57-52.
This is Creighton’s first trip to Las Vegas since Dec. 2008, when it won the Las Vegas Classic with wins over Fresno State and DePaul in the final two rounds.
Wisconsin has made two trips recently to Las Vegas, losing both to UNLV, the last in Nov. 2010.