- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 11, 2001

Washington Mystics forward Chamique Holdsclaw was placed on the injured list yesterday and will be sidelined for at least three games with what general manager Melissa McFerrin called a "stress-related reaction" in her right foot.
Losing their leading scorer and rebounder and the top vote-getter for the upcoming WNBA All-Star Game is a major blow for the Mystics as they begin the second half of the season today trying to rebound from a 5-11 start.
"With her being out, it hurts," said Mystics guard Nikki McCray, who on Monday was announced as a starter for Monday's All-Star Game in Orlando, Fla., along with Holdsclaw. "That's another rebounder, another scorer, points that we're getting consistently from her that we're gonna have to make up for."
The details of Holdsclaw's injury will be known today when the results of a bone scan she underwent yesterday afternoon are released. Results from an MRI of Holdsclaw's foot taken Monday were inconclusive.
It is suspected, though, that Holdsclaw has suffered her third stress fracture of a metatarsal bone in her right foot over a period of just 15 months. The five metatarsal bones lie in the middle of each foot between the toes and the ankle.
Holdsclaw did not play in the 2000 Olympics because of a stress fracture of her third metatarsal bone that took about 2? months to heal, and she was out a month and a half during the WNBA's 2000 preseason because of a stress fracture of her fifth metatarsal bone.
Because doctors do not suspect the current injury to be as serious as the previous two, "We are anticipating she's going to be out two weeks" to rest the foot, McFerrin said.
"I'm just grateful that I'm not going to be out the [rest of the] season," Holdsclaw said. "I've been through this injury three times now and just to say, 'OK, two week's rest, that's gonna do it,' makes me feel good."
Holdsclaw will miss the team's next two home games, today against the Detroit Shock and Saturday against the Los Angeles Sparks, as well as the All-Star Game.
By being placed on the injured list, Holdsclaw must also miss the Mystics' July 20 game at the Indiana Fever, but the two-week recovery period also spans into Washington's July 22 home rematch against Indiana.
Holdsclaw said she felt a "burning" in her foot after the Mystics lost to the Portland Fire last Friday in the second game of their recent three-game West Coast swing.
Despite the pain, Holdsclaw decided to stay in the starting lineup Saturday at the Phoenix Mercury. She played 34 minutes, pulled down eight rebounds but scored only seven points in the Mystics' 66-52 loss.
"After the game my foot was hurting again and Coach was like, 'You shouldn't have even played,' " she said. "I was just like, 'I know.' "
Mystics' coach Tom Maher was not the only one who thought it was inadvisable for Holdsclaw to play Saturday.
"[Washington team] Doctor [Marc] Connell said that if it was a home game and he was here, he probably would have pulled me and told me not to play," Holdsclaw said.
It will be interesting to see how Washington, a team with no major second scorer, will fare without Holdsclaw as it again tries to avoid dropping into last place in the league. The Shock (4-11) currently hold the WNBA's worst record.
McCray is the Mystics' second-highest scorer with an average of 10 points a game, but has been streaky this season. At Portland she scored just four points, one game after scoring a season-high 20 points in a 72-69 quadruple-overtime win at the Seattle Storm. Then, against the Mercury, she contributed 10 points in the loss.
Maher is looking for all of his players to step up and fill the void left by Holdsclaw.
"I think there should be pressure on [McCray] to play well, but she's been giving us some good minutes lately so I don't think that should change," he said. "I think just collectively, as a group, we all have to do more."
Washington forward Tonya Washington will replace Holdsclaw in the starting lineup today against Detroit. Also, Annie Burgess will return to the starting point guard position after beginning the last five games on the Mystics' bench.
Mystics forward Cass Bauer-Bilodeau was also moved to the injured list yesterday with a right knee injury. Washington guard Markita Aldridge and rookie forward Tamara Stocks were placed on the active roster.

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