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The Murray State News

Racers advance to MVC Quarterfinals

Jakob Milani
Murray State bench celebrates after a made three point shot.

After heading into halftime up 38-24, the Murray State offense continued to apply pressure throughout the second half and secured an 87-49 win to advance to the next round in the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. 

Murray State forced Bradley to shoot just 18-63 (29%) from the field in the MVC Tournament’s opening round. Murray State’s offense faced some trouble at the beginning of the first quarter, but they picked up the pace and ultimately shot 36-69 (52%) from the field. 

“I thought we made some really good decisions offensively and moved the ball, made some big shots,” Racers head coach Rechelle Turner said. “(We) got to the offensive glass and were able to get stops. When we get consecutive stops, we’re going to score the ball.”

The Racers finished the game out-rebounding the Braves 49-28 and scored 42 points in the paint. Murray State won the turnover game 15-13, forcing nine steals and adding six blocks.  

Senior forward Katelyn Young led the Racers in scoring. She had 16 points, along with four rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block. Redshirt freshman Zoe Stewart totaled 15 points five rebounds, two assists and a steal. Senior guard Bria Sanders-Woods had 14 points, six rebounds, three assists and three steals. Junior forward Ava Learn finished with 10 points, eight rebounds, four blocks and three steals. 

“As the season has gone on, I think today was one of the games that I could easily see that everybody just has confidence in each other no matter what,” Stewart said. “When you passed the ball, you felt like it was going in.”

The Racers advance to face the three-seed Missouri State Bears at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, March 15, in Moline, Illinois. The Bears enter the game with a 15-5 conference record. 

“It’s going to be tough,” Turner said. “They are well-coached (and) upper-class dominated… they have inside-outside presence, they play great defense, they do things to you that make you uncomfortable. They are definitely a challenge for us, and the thing about it is, we played them pretty well this year. I think they’re a pretty good matchup for us… We’re the underdog, but we kind of like it.”

Murray State and Missouri State split the regular season series 1-1 this year. The tiebreaker will be the most important game played between the two teams this season. If you cannot make it to the game, you can watch it live on ESPN+.

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About the Contributors
Ronan Summers, Sports writer
Jakob Milani
Jakob Milani, Sports Editor
Jakob Milani is all about sports. He joined the staff of The Murray State News in 2020 as a sports writer, assigned to women's basketball, and by fall 2021 was named Sports Editor. He is a dedicated lover of all things Chicago Cubs and Chicago Bears related, and loves to talk about all things sports. He is a co-host of "The Iron Grid" podcast with fellow sports writer Ronan Summers, and only ever watches ESPN in his down time. Aside from sports, Jakob also has a passion for music and baking. His favorite artists include Nirvana, Travis Scott, and Queen. His favorite item to bake is cheesecake.

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