COLUMBIA — They were the qualities that Missouri women's basketball coach Cindy Stein had hoped to have on her sideline.
The footwook. The deceptive explosiveness. The shooting ability.
Only now, the skills that had once enticed Stein to recruit Danielle Adams to play at Missouri were on the opposing team.
Adams, No. 10 Texas A&M's leading scorer, scored 19 points and seven rebounds, in limited playing time, to lead the Aggies past the Tigers 65-55 on Wednesday in College Station, Texas.
“If we would have had her, our program wouldn’t have struggled the way it has the past couple years,” Stein said in a radio interview before the game.
Adams, a 6-foot-1 junior, originally signed with the Tigers in 2007 out of Lee’s Summit High School in Kansas City. After failing to qualify academically, Adams attended Jefferson College in Hillsboro, about 45 minutes from downtown Saint Louis. During her time there, Adams was a two-time National Junior College Athletic Association All-American and was the player of the year last season. With her success at the junior college level, bigger schools started recruiting her and Adams was off to College Station to play for the Aggies.
Early in Wednesday's game Adams showed Missouri what they missed. Adams scored 10 points in the first seven minutes. But then she picked up her second foul and sat the rest of the half on the sideline. Missouri was able to close the gap to one point at halftime but it wasn’t enough, as Texas A&M sustained the lead in the second half and withstood a late Missouri late run. The Tigers were within a point with less than three minutes to go in the contest but turnovers cost them.
“Last three minutes, we didn’t take care of the ball like we needed to,” Stein said in a post game radio interview.
Missouri had one of its better shooting nights of the season, shooting 47 percent from the floor. Jessra Johnson led the Tigers with 15 points, and Christine Flores added 11.
“In our conference, you can’t just have one or two kids you’re relying on,” Stein said. “You’ve got to have scoring from all the spots.”
The loss marks the sixth time this season Missouri has lost by ten points or less.
“I think that they know we’re a stone’s throw away from knocking off some teams,” Stein said before the game.
Missouri (11-10, 1-7 Big 12) come home to face No. 19 Iowa State at 3 p.m. Sunday at Mizzou Arena.