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Nate Funk's sore shoulder shouldn't keep the senior off the court tonight when Creighton tries to improve to 3-0 against Dayton.
Funk aggravated a shoulder injury that dates back to high school during Tuesday's victory at George Mason. He had to leave the game with 111/2 minutes to play, sat out about three minutes but returned to play another four minutes before taking the final five minutes off after Creighton had built a 17-point lead in a game it eventually won 72-52.
Creighton coach Dana Altman said Funk practiced Thursday night, and the 6-foot-3 guard appeared to be going at full bore during Friday's workout at Qwest Center Omaha. Asked about Funk's status, Altman said he should be ready to play in tonight's 7:05 home game.
Funk missed a game last December because of the shoulder. Asked if he's concerned about the injury lingering into the season, Altman replied, "I don't know."
When asked if Funk's shoulder is something he wanted to talk about, Altman replied, "Not really."
Funk leads the Bluejays in scoring, having averaged 13.0 points in wins over Arkansas-Pine Bluff and George Mason. He had 12 points against George Mason, as did Johnny Mathies, but the pair combined to shoot 10 of 26 from the field.
Mathies also had a shaky opener, misfiring on all four of his field-goal attempts in scoring just one point. The 6-foot-1 senior put up a couple of shots against George Mason that could be best described as questionable, but Altman said he isn't concerned about Mathies' slow start.
"He's taken some bad shots but he's the one guy we're asking to play two different spots," Altman said. "He's going back and forth between the two guard spots, while the other guys are pretty much locked in. Johnny's the one guy we move around quite a bit.
"The expectations are for him to be thinking and focused all the time. There have been a couple of times where he's lost his focus, but he'll be fine."
Mathies and his teammates will need to be focused tonight against a Dayton team that is off to a 2-1 start. The Flyers own lopsided wins over Tennessee Tech and Morehead State but lost 58-42 at Miami of Ohio.
Dayton has outrebounded its three opponents by an average of 11.0 per game but has had difficulty taking care of the basketball in averaging 20.3 turnovers per game.
"They're a good basketball team," Altman said. "I don't think there's any one thing they do (exceptionally), but they do everything pretty well. They shoot it OK, they make shots for each other and they run their stuff. Defensively, they're solid and they've done a good job on the boards so far."
The same could be said about the Bluejays to this point. Creighton has shot 47 percent from the field, outrebounded its two opponents by an average of 12 per game and limited them to an average of 53.5 points.
Altman will be looking for some improvement in offensive execution as the Bluejays get deeper into the nonconference portion of the schedule.
"There are things we need to execute a lot better," he said. "Our timing hasn't been very good, and there are just a lot of things we work into in our offense. It's early, and we're working in some new guys so it's going to take awhile."
Creighton's most impressive newcomers have been guards Josh Dotzler and Nick Porter. The 6-3 Porter is averaging 10.5 points and 7.0 rebounds off the bench, while Dotzler has shown the steadiness that the Bluejays were hoping for from the point guard out of Bellevue West.
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