Creighton coach Elmar Bolowich constantly preaches patience to his team, and the Bluejays showed plenty of it Saturday.
Sven Koenig’s header into the goal in the 84th minute was the game-winner as the Bluejays outlasted Seton Hall 1-0 in front of a Morrison Stadium crowd of 2,587.
CU dominated possession most of the match, outshooting the Pirates 22-4 and having plenty of opportunities to go ahead.
But it took until 6:15 left before the Jays were able to convert.
Bolowich said that’s how a match can play out sometimes.
“I thought we played really, really disciplined tonight. We moved the ball well and had for sure the majority of possession,” Bolowich said.
“In the first half, outstanding. The only thing that was really missing was the go-ahead goal. You have to be patient against a team like that."
Koenig’s goal was his team-leading sixth of the season, and it came off a nice cross from Younes Boudadi.
Koenig said the finish was easy.
“Amazing cross. I mean I had to just put my head there. It was a very good cross, and it came at the right time for sure,” Koenig said.
The Bluejays (7-1-1, 3-0-0 Big East) had a good scoring opportunity early on a shot by Tor Trosten in the sixth minute, but his blast ricocheted off the far post.
An outstanding pass by Ziyad Fares in the 17th minute created a one-on-one opportunity for Koenig on Pirates keeper Andreas Nota.
Nota won the battle, coming out just enough to cut Koenig’s shot angle and make the save.
The Jays outshot Seton Hall 11-0 in the first half.
Despite the scoreless half, Boudadi said the objective was to stick to the game plan.
“I think we need to just be confident in what we can do, and we’ve seen the whole season that we’ve outshot every opponent in every game. That’s what we try to do,” Boudadi said.
“Once you do that, eventually you’re going to get a goal.”
The Pirates’ best scoring opportunity came in the 69th minute on a lone counterattack by Carlton McKenzie, who fought through three challenges before sending a shot wide.
Bolowich said that type of play was the plan all along for the Pirates (4-3-1, 1-2-0).
“Their game plan was to wait for us to make a mistake and then to counter,” he said.
“And they almost were rewarded for that in the second half when the ball was intercepted and they got a shot off on the counter. That’s really what they were waiting for for 90 minutes."
The Bluejays countered, and Koenig rang a shot off the crossbar 63 seconds later, but he made no mistake on his goal 14 minutes later.
“It’s obviously very important that we believe in ourselves,” Koenig said. “And we said at halftime no matter how long it’s 0-0, we just have to believe in ourselves.
“We know we have the quality. We know we can score a goal on these guys all day long, but yeah, we just had to finish it off. We stayed patient.”
Creighton will play No. 4 Denver at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Morrison Stadium. The Pioneers played Eastern Illinois to a scoreless draw Saturday.
Seton Hall (4-3-1, 1-2-0)...... 0 0—0
At Creighton (7-1-1, 3-0-0)...0 1—1
Goals: 1, CU, Sven Koenig (Younes Boudadi) 83:45. Shots: SHU 4, CU 20. Shots on goal: SHU 0, CU 7. Saves: SHU, Andreas Nota 6. CU, Paul Kruse 0. Fouls: SHU, 16. CU, 12. A: 2,587.