OMAHA, Neb. (AP) -- Nate Funk and Anthony Tolliver combined for 43 points as Creighton rallied to beat Missouri State 77-74 in its Missouri Valley Conference opener on Saturday.
The Bluejays (7-4, 1-0) erased an 11-point deficit with an 18-4 run over the final 4:21. The third-largest home crowd in school history -- 15,684 -- watched the game at Qwest Center Omaha.The Bears (11-2, 1-1) trailed by 10 early in the second half before Blake Ahearn hit a baseline jumper that started a 16-0 run. He scored eight of his team's first 10 points during the rally and finished with 21 points.Missouri State led by as many as 11 points, but Creighton battled back to take a 72-71 lead on a three-pointer by Dane Watts with less than a minute to play.A free throw by Tolliver with 21 seconds to go and a pair of free throws by Funk four seconds later put the Bluejays up 75-71.Funk finished with 23 points while Tolliver had 20.Creighton led 44-37 at the break after shooting 65 percent (17 of 26) from the field in the first half.The Bluejays used a 10-0 run to take an early nine-point lead, and hit 15 of their 21 shots in the first 15 minutes.After falling behind 33-22 in the first half, the Bears scored 11 of the next 14 points to pull within three. But Creighton scored six of the last eight points of the half.