Southeast Missouri State women's basketball team loses to Missouri

Friday, November 30, 2012

There would be no second-half comeback for the Southeast Missouri State women's basketball team this time.

Southeast's last two wins came after the Redhawks trailed by double figures at halftime. They were 0-17 when behind at halftime a year ago.

Missouri made sure it wouldn't happen Thursday night as the Tigers, ahead by 10 points at the break, ran away to an 80-51 rout in Columbia, Mo.

The Redhawks fell to 3-4 and the Tigers improved to 5-2. MU leads the all-time series against Southeast 14-1. The squads had last met during the 2008-09 season, a 60-31 MU win.

Southeast actually made a nice first-half comeback after falling behind 15-0 and 18-2. The Redhawks missed their first nine field-goal attempts and did not score for the opening six minutes.

The Redhawks cut the deficit to 22-20 and later trailed 25-23. But MU closed the period on an 11-3 run to lead 36-26 at the intermission.

Southeast was down 38-29 early in the second half when the Tigers used a 16-2 burst to break things wide open at 54-31.

The Redhawks got no closer than 18 points and MU's biggest advantage was 31 points.

"It's difficult to get down as much as we did early on the road and come back," said second-year Southeast coach Ty Margenthaler, whose squad's previous most lopsided loss this season was by 17 points at Houston. "The players fought back to their credit and got it back to two points, but Missouri went on a little run at the end [of the first half]."

MU entered the night second in the Southeastern Conference with 46 made 3-pointers -- an average of 7.7 per game -- and first in 3-point attempts with 150.

The Tigers, shooting 30.7 percent from beyond the arc through six contests, hit 13 of 37 Thursday (35.1 percent).

"We knew Missouri was going to shoot a lot of threes, but we didn't do a real good job defending it and our energy wasn't where we needed it tonight," Margenthaler said.

MU shot a strong 45.7 percent from the field overall (32 of 70). Southeast shot just 29 percent (18 of 62) and made only 6 of 20 3-pointers (30 percent).

Freshman forward Connor King, a Jackson High School graduate, scored 11 points off the bench to lead Southeast. She played 29 minutes, second-most on the team.

King had scored only nine points in Southeast's first six games.

"She's going to be a really good player," Margenthaler said.

Junior forward Patricia Mack led Southeast in rebounding with 12.

Senior guard Sydney Crafton paced the Tigers with a career-high 26 points. She had been averaging 11.8 points.

Crafton hit 11 of 13 shots, including 2 of 3 from beyond the arc.

"She's a really talented player," Margenthaler said.

Sophomore guard Morgan Eye made 5 of 10 3-pointers and added 15 points for MU.

Thursday's game ended a stretch that had the Redhawks playing six straight contests away from Cape Girardeau, including five true road games and one neutral site matchup.

The Redhawks are back in action Saturday, hosting Illinois-Chicago (1-3) at 2 p.m. Southeast lost to the Flames 69-54 last year in Chicago.

"Everybody's looking forward to being back at home," Margenthaler said.

There will be a free youth clinic following Saturday's game. Youngsters attending the contest will receive instruction from Southeast coaches and players on basketball fundamentals, including ballhandling, shooting, passing and defense.

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