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MU women's basketball team loses final home game

Tuesday, March 3, 2009 | 11:04 p.m. CST; updated 9:45 p.m. CST, Wednesday, March 4, 2009

COLUMBIA — With her team in the middle of a 10-2 run, Alyssa Hollins drove down the middle of the lane and released a shot as she collided with her opponent.

The only senior on the MU women's basketball team was in the final six minutes of her last appearance at Mizzou Arena, and the Tigers had temporarily shaken off their offensive struggles and cut No. 24 Iowa State's lead from 18 to 10.

The whistle blew as Hollins' shot sailed through the basket. The referee on the baseline emphatically signaled block as the referee on the outside made a lunging charge call.

Pause for discussion.

Charge.

The game wasn't over, but Missouri's comeback was. What could have been a seven-point lead soon became a 12-point margin, and the Tigers eventually lost 62-47 on Tuesday night .

"You know, I actually didn’t see where that was to have a good look at it. I just knew that I felt like we had hands and bodies all over us on every kind of penetration, and we weren’t getting the calls, and sometimes that happens," Missouri coach Cindy Stein said after the game.

“They kept telling me that everybody agreed, so, you know, and that’s great," Stein continued unconvincingly. "You know, like I said, I think that, you know, obviously we’re not allowed to comment on that. I probably already said too much.

“You rely on great sportswriters to call it how they see it," she finished with a slight smile.

Hollins followed her coach to the podium and tried to reflect on four years of home games.

"It goes by really fast," Hollins said before tears caused her to pause.

"It's a lot of memories — a lot of good, a lot of bad, a lot of low points, a lot of high points," she said. "I wouldn't trade my time here for anything."

After what must have been a high point — beating Colorado on the road for Missouri's first road win in two seasons — the home loss dropped Missouri to 13-15 and 4-11 in the Big 12 while Iowa State moved to 22-7 overall and 10-5 in conference play. The Tigers will play at Texas Tech at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

Hollins finished with nine points in 36 minutes. She has been the focus of opposing defenses for the majority of her career, and she was again on Tuesday night.

Iowa State coach Bill Fennelly said his team has "been chasing around Alyssa Hollins for four years."

As has someone on every team in the Big 12.

"It seems like I've gotten to know personally a girl on every team." Hollins joked.

Usually a study in composure, something she never lost after the foul call went against her, Hollins emotions were both understandable and unexpected.

"I think it hit me when I was walking to the locker room after the game because, I don't know, it was just the disappointment in the loss," she said. "We made a run at the end of the game and just didn't have enough steam and then just realizing this was my last go-around."


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