May 28, 2014
Mizzou alumna Syndey Crafton writes in about her experience playing overseas. Check out how much fun she was having below...
I've certainly heard about other players experiences, but not one is alike. We wasted no time once I landed in Quito, Ecuador. From there it was a three hour car ride to Ambato, Ecuador, where I resided for the next eight weeks. My living situation was not as expected. I ended up living with a teammate and loved every second. I had the option to get my own hotel but after a week, I was in heaven. I had my own room, with TV and WiFi. I also had my bed made daily, fresh food prepared any time I was hungry as well as my laundry folded.
Not two days after being in Ecuador we had our first game. I had one shoot around with my chilebo-Espoch, that morning and we played later that night.
After our first round of teams I being to notice how our team differed from the rest. The top three teams had multiple foreigners. Espoch had one and that was myself. Their were other college players from South Carolina, Florida state, and California, while the rest were players from Romania, Argentina and Spain. Also, the age range between players varied greatly. Our youngest was 16 and Mavort had players as old as 35.
The biggest adjustment for me was how aggressive they played. This was mind-blowing. There was grabbing, pushing, shoving and anything else you could imagine. It was so aggressive, it would alter my game. I also found out the hard way that you cannot speak to the referees. I received my first technical in our first game.
Overall my team went 2-12. It was rough. I didn't understand why it didn't bother the players if we won or not. Then I realized this was just for fun, but to me this was the start of my career. Every game I came in with the mindset that I would play my very best. I ended season with 420 points averaging 32.5 per game. I was the league's top scorer.
Life outside of basketball was a blast! I first had encounter with authentic salsa dancing. A couple of my teammates took me to a national park, where I could overlook the city of Ambato. The most fun I had was at a city called Baños. I zip-lined over two waterfalls and later hiked a mile down to another gigantic waterfall. It was like nothing I have ever seen, absolutely beautiful.
I came to Ecuador with an open mind. I knew it wouldn't be anything like I was used to in the United States. It was a great experience and gave me an idea of what it is like overseas. I am very thankful for the opportunity.
I am now back in the United States and will begin playing for a team in Italy this April. I leave for that on August 23.
Women's Basketball Hands out Post-Season...
Head Coach Robin Pingeton's squad overcame several injuries to post the most wins by Mizzou since...
Morgan Eye Invited to College Three-Point...
Mizzou senior Morgan Eye has been selected to compete at the 27th annual State Farm College Slam ...
Tigers Close Season in Battle at Ann Arbor
Mizzou Women's Basketball concluded its season on Thursday night in the third round of the WNIT. ...
Tigers Look for Another Postseason Win at Michigan
The Tigers will head to Michigan to face the Wolverines for the third round of the tournament....
Eye's Hot Shooting Leads Tigers over Wildcats
The Tigers will advance to the third round of the postseason WNIT, thanks to hot shooting from...
Mizzou Heads to K-State for WNIT Round 2
Mizzou will head to Kansas State to face a former Big 12 foe on Sunday. The Tigers will look to...
Tigers Earn WNIT Win over UNI
Mizzou Women's Basketball earned its first postseason WNIT win since 2003 on Thursday night with ...
Tigers Ready for Postseason Play
The Tigers will kick off the first round of the 2015 WNIT at Northern Iowa on Thursday. The...
Official StoreOfficial Online
AUCTIONSOfficial Mobile APP