Creighton coach Elmar Bolowich hopes the No. 9 Bluejays learned a lesson during Tuesday’s match with Jacksonville, which entered with a 1-7 record.

The CU offense took a long time to get into rhythm but finally found just enough as leading scorer Sven Koenig scored two goals to lift the Jays to a 2-1 nonconference win over the Dolphins in front of a Morrison Stadium crowd of 1,825.

The win was the Jays’ fifth in a row.

It took the Bluejays more than 10 minutes to get a shot off on a leaky Jacksonville defense that had surrendered 26 goals in eight matches.

Bolowich said the match against the Dolphins, who were missing five starters because of injury, was a “wake-up call.”

“You have to get ready for every game. I thought we made it way too hard on ourselves.

“You can never take any team lightly. You have to earn everything because every team can have a good day and can beat you.”

The Jays’ first good scoring opportunity didn’t come until the 28th minute, when Koenig got loose behind the Jacksonville back line.

But Koenig’s attempt was turned away by Dolphin keeper Matt Levy to keep the match scoreless, and it stayed that way through halftime.

Koenig said the Bluejays (6-1-1) weren’t able to connect enough on offense in the first half.

“We started a bit slow. I don’t know. We put in the effort. I had the breakaway chance in the first half, and if I put that one away, I think we would have had this game already in the first half.

“We didn’t move the ball quick enough. We took too many touches. That was all we were talking about (at halftime),” Koenig said.

Creighton stepped up the pressure to begin the second half with Ziyad Fares firing a shot just more than a minute in that was blocked by a Jacksonville defender.

Koenig got behind the Dolphin back line again in the 60th minute, and he made no mistake this time, slipping it past Levy for his fourth goal of the season and a 1-0 Creighton advantage.

Levy misplayed a through ball less than 12 minutes later, and Koenig pounced on the miscue with nothing between him and the goal as he easily made it 2-0.

That goal proved to be key after Jacksonville’s Alex Dixon scored the first goal  since Sept. 3 in the 76th minute to pull the Dolphins to within 2-1.

Bolowich said the travel schedule may have contributed to the Bluejays’ erratic play.

The team returned from a trip to Villanova on Sunday, leaving the Jays with only a day to prepare for the Dolphins.

“We played a little bit undisciplined in the final third, and we also played a little bit undisciplined on the defensive end today, and we got punished for it by that goal,” he said.

Steven Saunders had a chance to tie the match for the Dolphins with just more than a minute left with a header off a crossing pass, but his shot went wide.

“Unfortunately, it took us some time,” Koenig said. “But at the end, we got the three points.”

The Bluejays jump back into Big East play Saturday at 7 p.m. when they host Seton Hall.

Jacksonville (1-8-0)..........0 1—1

At Creighton (6-1-1).........0 2—2

Goals: 1, CU, Sven Koenig (Yudai Tashiro) 59:22. 2, CU, Koenig (Kuba Polat) 71:14. 3, JU, Alex Dixon (Jose Manzo, Bryson Pink) 75:05. Shots: JU 5, CU 23. Shots on goal: JU 3, CU 9. Saves: JU, Matt Levy 7. CU, Paul Kruse 2. Fouls: JU, 10. CU, 10. A: 1,825

Commenting is limited to Omaha World-Herald subscribers. To sign up, click here.

If you're already a subscriber and need to activate your access or log in, click here.

Load comments

You must be a full digital subscriber to read this article You must be a digital subscriber to view this article.