Updated at: 12/09/2012 3:06 PM
By ERIC OLSON
(AP) OMAHA, Neb. - Doug McDermott scored 30 points for No. 16 Creighton, which broke away late in the first half and beat Akron 77-61 on Sunday.
McDermott, who made a career-high six 3-pointers, also had 30 points against Wisconsin last month and on seven other occasions in his career for the Bluejays (9-1).
Gregory Echenique added nine points and seven rebounds for Creighton.
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. The Zips, who came in averaging almost 10 3-pointers a game, made a season-low four on 16 attempts and were held to their lowest point total.
Creighton’s Grant Gibbs had eight assists and no turnovers to go along with his 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 he 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.
The Bluejays never let Akron within nine points the rest of the way, but they gave the fans reason to stay.
Echenique delighted the crowd when he took the baseline on Marshall, faked hard to his left and then went right for a backboard-shaking dunk.
With the shot clock running down, McDermott snaked around Demetrius Treadwell for a slick left-handed scoop shot.
Jahenns Manigat made a great hustle play after dribbling the ball off his leg. As the ball rolled toward the far end, Manigat took off sprinting and dived to snag it just before it crossed the line. He called timeout to save the possession, and McDermott finished it with his fifth 3-pointer that made it a 16-point lead.
The Bluejays were without Josh Jones for a second straight game. Jones, the first guard off the bench, fainted before Thursday’s game at Nebraska and has been undergoing medical tests. Jones, who watched the game in his warmups, had an infected heart valve replaced in 2007 during his senior year in high school.
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.
(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)