Published Monday, October 22, 2012 AT 11:50 PM / Updated at 12:22 AM
Practice grind taking a toll on Bluejays
Steven Pivovar Omaha World-Herald

The bumps and bruises are starting to add up for Creighton’s basketball team.

The Bluejays made it through last week’s demanding schedule of two-a-days with no major injuries, although guard Jahenns Manigat was slowed by a thigh bruise and center Gregory Echenique had a finger injury on his right hand that made things uncomfortable whenever he caught the ball.

Creighton took Sunday off and return to practice Monday. Guard Nevin Johnson didn’t make it through the entire workout, turning his ankle and spending the second half of practice with an icebag on the injury.

On the court, his teammates looked slightly ragged as they spent the last half of the practice scrimmaging. The less-in-inspiring play hardly surprised coach Greg McDermott.

“For some reason, the day after an off day, we never look good,’’ McDermott said. “I don’t know why.’’

Overall, McDermott said the Bluejays have made some strides in the opening 11 days of practice as they prepare for a Nov. 9 season opener against North Texas.

“We’re right about where we wanted to be,’’ McDermott said. “We haven’t had to go backwards on too many things, you know, reteach them. The returning guys have picked up stuff pretty fast, especially the things that were similar to what we were doing last year.

“The newcomers are doing their best to catch on as quickly as they can.’’

The Bluejays will be focusing their efforts this week on preparing for Saturday’s closed scrimmage at Iowa. Division I teams can either play two exhibition games against non-Division I teams, have an exhibition against a non-Division I opponent and a scrimmage against a Division I team, or have two scrimmages.

McDermott has opted for one exhibition and one scrimmage. The Bluejays faced Colorado the past two years.

NCAA rules prohibit fans or news media representatives from attending the scrimmage, and no statistics are allowed to be released.

About Steven Pivovar

Steven Pivovar is a staff writer for The Omaha World-Herald and primarily covers Creighton athletics and the College World Series. You can follow Steven on Twitter (@PivOWH) or email him at spivovar@owh.com.