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.
Mizzou Rallies to Win Over Colorado, 53-50
Down by as many as 15 points in the first half, Mizzou women's basketball rallied to defeat...
Tigers Welcome Buffaloes Back to Mizzou Arena
Mizzou's win over Saint Louis marks the Tigers' 19th consecutive non-conference win inside...
Tigers Take Show Me State Showdown Over SLU, 74-55
Senior guard Morgan Eye (Montrose, Mo.) fell one point short of a season-high with 20 points as...
A Family Affair: Meet Freshman Bri Porter
Bri Porter hails from a basketball family. Not only is her father, Michael Porter, an assistant...
Quick Turnaround for Tigers as Mizzou Hosts SLU...
The Tigers will return to Columbia to host Saint Louis on Monday, Dec. 8. The game will mark...
Mizzou Overcome by Bradley in Road Contest
Sophomore Jordan Frericks' finished with a career-best 27 points added to 17 rebounds for her...
Mizzou Heads to Bradley for Saturday Contest
RECORD WATCH: Head Coach Robin Pingeton earned her 400th career head coaching victory. She...
Frericks, Stock Lead Tigers Past Ramblers 56-45
Jordan Frericks (Quincy, Ill.) led the way for Mizzou (5-1) with her second double-double of the ...
Official StoreOfficial Online
AUCTIONSOfficial Mobile APP