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01.31.2011 / The Jays Head to Peoria to face Bradley. Posting by Brian Kooienga, Creighton Mens Basketball Graduate Manager

Whenever you have an opportunity to raise awareness for a cause, one that has personally affected you or your family, there is extra motivation to do a good job and make the most out of the situation. Last Saturdays game was just the stage that freshman Doug McDermott needed to get some attention pointed in the direction of cancer research. Dougs own mother, and wife of head coach Greg McDermott, is a 5 year cancer survivor, so it is easy to see why our Coaches vs. Cancer night why Doug played with extra fire.

"The Bradley Braves are a very talented squad featuring Andrew Warren, who is the league is leading scorer."

Prior to leaving the locker room, as a part of his usual pre-game speech, coach McDermott left a special area blank on the chalkboard, a place that he had let his wife write a personal message to the team.  Written in pink, it was in fact a "Pinkout" at the Qwest Center on Saturday, the message was simple “Shoot for the Cause.”  Millions of Americans are affected every single day by this crippling disease to which we know no cure. Billions of dollars are spent, countless hours of research and testing are done every year, and events like Coaches Vs. Cancer are held every single year to help raise awareness to find a way to beat this terrible disease. Unfortunately, nearly everyone you know either has had it or knows someone who has battled through this medical mystery, and that is reason enough to support cancer research and the fight against it.

Looking at the game, the Bluejays simply came out and wanted it more.  Finally putting together two solid halves of basketball, the team decked out in white jerseys and pink shoes, were able show the huge crowd of over 16,000 that this team wasn’t going to lay down and mail in the rest of their season. Big games from Kenny Lawson Jr. and Jahenns Manigat were just what the doctor ordered in time for a brief stretch of games that the Jays are very capable of winning. 

While the schedule does soften up a little bit, these games are absolutely critical to keeping pace in the conference race, and seeding implications for the always crazy and breathtaking MVC Tournament down in St. Louis, Missouri.

Pending the upcoming weather impact, the guys are scheduled to fly into Peoria, IL on Monday afternoon and get a quick practice in at the Civic Auditorium in downtown Peoria. Followed by a team meal, film session, and about an hour of free time, the guys will then hit the sack and get some rest.  With Saturday games followed by Tuesday road games, it leaves little time to rest and recuperate, and that is why staying healthy and getting sleep is so important to our success, especially on the road. 

Playing a team that is winless in conference is always dangerous, especially when you yourself are trying to make a run to the conference championship. The Bradley Braves are a very talented squad featuring Andrew Warren, who is the league’s leading scorer. In the last game against the Braves, Creighton came out on fire from deep in the first half, and opened up a huge 20+ point lead at home. Clawing back and making the game interesting at the end, these Braves have a lot of fight in them and need to be taken seriously, especially when they know what they could potentially do to our season.

Hope the weather holds up, everyone should bundle up and stay warm and watch the game on Tuesday night!

Go Jays
Brian Kooienga

What did you think of the Jays game this past weekend? Is there still hope for a Missouri Valley Championship? Join in the conversation NOW and post your comments.

Posted at 11:32 AM | Permalink
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