Baylor hands Missouri eighth conference loss

Saturday, February 14, 2009 | 1:49 p.m. CST; updated 7:02 p.m. CST, Saturday, February 14, 2009
Baylor guard Kelli Griffin, right, and Missouri guard Raeshara Brown (23) battle for a rebound during the first half of the women's basketball game Saturday in Waco, Texas. Looking on are Baylor's Rachel Allison (14) and Missouri's Shakara Jones (44).

There was more bad news for the Missouri women's basketball team on Saturday.

With less than six minutes gone in its game at No. 7 Baylor, starting point guard Bekah Mills injured the surgically-repaired right knee that caused her to miss all of last season.

Missouri coach Cindy Stein had to use a timeout to get the limping Mills to the bench, where she stayed the rest of the game.

For a short time Missouri hung with the Bears, but it did not last, and Missouri fell 72-43.

“Honestly, I think it’s tough," Stein said in a radio interview after the game. "Bekah went out of the game. When we have Bekah at point, things run a lot smoother, and that’s not a discredit to Toy (Richbow) or Rae (Brown), but that’s matter of fact. We struggled with some things, getting into some offenses and getting some good flows.”

Stein said she did not think Mills' injury was serious.

“Hopefully it’s not an extended injury and she’ll be ready to go by Wednesday," Stein said. “We were being safe because it was her knee, but it wasn’t her ACL. We felt like we needed to just be cautious, ice it and kind of take care of it.”

The loss moved the Tigers below .500 for the season at 11-12 and dropped them to 2-8 in Big 12 Conference play this season. Missouri hadn't played in a week, when it picked up its second Big 12 win with a victory over Kansas at Mizzou Arena.

“Well, they did," said Stein when it was suggested that her players looked like they hadn't played since last Saturday. "I thought we were flat again, and I just don’t understand it. We just talked about it. I don’t think anybody’s pleased with their performance.”

Senior Alyssa Hollins, who Stein said was suffering from a stomach virus, went 2-of 14 from the field and finished with five points. The only Tiger to finish in double digits was Jessra Johnson with 10 points. Johnson, Missouri's second leading scorer, once again came off the bench against the Bears.

Missouri was outrebounded 45-29 by Baylor (21-3, 9-2 in the Big 12) and  could not stop center Danielle Wilson in the paint. Wilson made 11 of her 13 shots and, despite shooting 4-of-14 from the free-throw line, finished with 26 points to go along with 13 rebounds.

Nebraska's victory over Texas Tech on Saturday means Missouri is once again tied for last place in the conference with six games remaining in the regular season.

The Tigers will play No. 20 Kansas State at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at Mizzou Arena. Missouri nearly upset the Wildcats in the teams' first meeting this season, losing 58-54.

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