Crafton Shines in Cancun Challenge

Thursday, Nov. 22-

The Mizzou women’s basketball team, led by senior Sydney Crafton, earned a 49-44 victory Thursday afternoon against Wichita State in the opening round of the Cancun Challenge.

Crafton, who had 14 points, went 4-5 from the field. She was the only Tiger to reach double-digits. Crafton also nearly had a double-double with eight rebounds on the day.

Momentum swung back and forth through the first 13 minutes of the game. With the score at 12-11, Mizzou’s Morgan Eye sunk a huge three-pointer to give her team a four-point edge. The lead would only grow from there.

After a jumper from Wichita State’s Kelsey Jacobs, Crafton stroked her first and only three-point shot of the game. Just 18 seconds after Crafton’s score, Bri Kulas made a shot from under the basket to give the Tigers a 20-13 lead with 1:20 left in the half. Mizzou had a 22-15 advantage going into the break.

It was none other than Crafton that scored the first three points for Missouri in the second half. She rattled in a free throw and the first of three lay-ups to give the Tigers a double-digit lead. Mizzou continued to add to its already big advantage.

The biggest lead came after a three from freshman Maddie Stock. Her three-pointer made the lead peak at 40-23. Missouri needed every last point in its huge cushion, as Wichita State would fight its way back.

The Shockers went on an 18-6 run to bring the score to 46-41 with 50 seconds to go. The Tigers free-throw shooting came through in the end, as Eye put the icing on the cake with two points from the charity stripe with two seconds left.

Mizzou improves to 4-0 with the victory. The Tigers next matchup is against Green Bay at 5 p.m. Friday in the Cancun Challenge.

– Kyle Norris
23 Sports
Staff Writer