OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Maurice Watson Jr. scored 21 points and No. 8 Creighton matched its best start in program history with a 75-64 victory over No. 12 Butler on Wednesday night.
The Bluejays (16-1, 4-1 Big East) rode hot shooting in the first half to build a big lead that Butler (14-3, 3-2) couldn’t overcome with its star Kelan Martin still struggling with his shot.
Watson made 9 of 14 shots and had seven assists but committed a season-high eight turnovers. Khyri Thomas added 14 points and 12 rebounds, and Cole Huff and Justin Patton each had 10 points.
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Avery Woodson led the Bulldogs with 14 points.
Butler lost for the first time in five games against Top 25 opponents, and it failed in the bid for a fourth win over a top 10 opponent. All of the losses have come on the road.
No. 11 NORTH CAROLINA 93, WAKE FOREST 87
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) – Justin Jackson hit a huge 3-pointer with 1:03 left and North Carolina did just enough to hold off Wake Forest.
Jackson finished with 19 points for the Tar Heels (15-3, 3-1 Atlantic Coast Conference), while Kennedy Meeks added 18 points and 11 rebounds.
UNC twice blew second-half leads when it was in control, first letting a 19-point lead slip to one and then losing much of a nine-point margin in the final 4 minutes.
But Jackson’s 3 finally gave UNC the push it needed, with Isaiah Hicks and Kenny Williams each hitting key free throws in the final minute to keep UNC out front.
Bryant Crawford scored 22 points for the Demon Deacons (10-7, 1-4), while freshman Brandon Childress scored all of his season-high 16 points after halftime.
UNC lost freshman big man Tony Bradley Jr. to a possible concussion late in the first half.
No. 14 LOUISVILLE 85, PITTSBURGH 80
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) – Quentin Snider scored 22 points, including two free throws with 25.3 seconds remaining, and Deng Adel added a free throw 8 seconds later as Louisville survived Jamel Artis’ career-high 43 points.
The Cardinals appeared in good shape with a 59-35 lead midway through the second half before Artis’ 32-point second half rallied the Panthers within 81-76 with 45 seconds remaining. Donovan Mitchell made one of two from the line before Snider and Adel added critical free throws to provide a cushion as Louisville (14-3, 2-2 Atlantic Coast Conference) won its second straight.
Snider also had a couple of key baskets down the stretch to finish 7 of 11 from the field including 3 of 4 from long range. Mitchell and Adel each finished with 15 points.
Artis was 15 of 22 from the field with seven 3s for Pittsburgh (12-5, 1-3).
MICHIGAN ST. 65, No. 24 MINNESOTA 47
EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Miles Bridges scored all 16 of his points in the first half, helping Michigan State build a huge lead.
The Spartans (12-6, 4-1 Big Ten) started the night in a five-way tie atop the conference with the Golden Gophers (11-7, 3-2) and moved a half-game ahead of No. 17 Purdue, Maryland and Nebraska.
Michigan State led the entire game, went ahead by 22 points at halftime and easily kept a comfortable lead.
Joshua Langford scored nine of his 13 points in the first half for the Spartans and Nick Ward, who fouled out, had nine points and eight rebounds in 13 minutes.
Nate Mason scored 14 points and Dupree McBrayer had 11 for Minnesota, which lost its first game as a ranked team.