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Best friends reunited in Missouri women's basketball loss to Oklahoma State

Saturday, January 21, 2012 | 9:08 p.m. CST; updated 11:04 p.m. CST, Saturday, January 21, 2012

COLUMBIA — Before senior Bailey Gee came to Missouri, she was Miss Kansas Basketball in 2008.

That year was Gee's senior year of high school, and her Andover Central High School team went undefeated and won a state championship .

Gee's point guard that season was Tiffany Bias, a sophomore on the team. Bias was Miss Kansas Basketball in 2010.

"In high school, we were best friends," Gee said. "We were like attached at the hip, wherever I was she was, wherever she was I was."

On Saturday, the two friends were reunited when Oklahoma State beat Missouri 62-58 at Mizzou Arena.

Bias, the starting point guard for Oklahoma State, scored 12 points and had six assists in the Cowgirls' first Big 12 road win since February 2010.

Bias also had three steals and was constantly in the face of freshman point guard Kyley Simmons.

"I thought Tiffany did a great job defensively of pressuring the point guard without fouling," Oklahoma State coach Jim Littell said. "I think it disrupted their offense a little bit."

Bias, a big time point guard who started four years in high school and was thrust into the starting role as a freshman last season, was impressed with Simmons.

"I thought she handled it well being a freshman point guard," Bias said. "I've been there, so I kind of know what she's going through. It's the kind of thing where you step up into a big spot and a big role, and you just have to take it and run with it."

It was the kind of play that Gee was accustomed to seeing from Bias in high school.

"She was a great, great player in high school," Gee said. "I mean she did track and won the gold medal in almost every single sprint. She's so fast. She's only improved her skills."

Gee scored just three points for Missouri on Saturday but made her presence known with some second half hustle plays that kept Missouri close.

Late in the game, she saved the ball from going out of bounds after a missed shot and grabbed an offensive rebound after a missed free throw by Christine Flores.

"Man, she works her tail off," Missouri coach Robin Pingeton said of Gee. "Really, tonight, we didn't have 12 players that were ready to do that."

Flores led the team with 20 points in a loss that Pingeton called, "one of our most disappointing losses of the season."

After the game, as Gee signed autographs, she kept watching to see when her old friend would come back out to the court. The two didn't have a chance to talk before the game and couldn't talk as friends during the game.

"I (wanted to) be like, 'Hey Tiff,' but you just gotta play like she's just another opponent," Gee said.

Busy with basketball, they only get to talk about once a month. When they do, basketball is the focus of their conversations.

Gee also tries to make it back to Andover basketball games whenever she can. Her sister, Camille, is a senior on the team right now and has verbally committed to play at Johnson Country Community College — the same school that Missouri junior Liz Smith used to play at.

When Andover had a second straight undefeated season in Bias' junior year, Gee was able to make it back to watch Bias and her old team win its second straight state title.

"Me and Bailey are still close, no matter how far," Bias said.

Missouri plays again at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Texas.


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