On the Shandong side, Cao bagged a game-high 26 points, and Yang Hengyu and Wang Yingzhu each scored 15.
Messi admitted Thursday's match did not pan out as the Albiceleste had hoped, rueing his team's lethargy early on.
Nitra is the new leader of the rankings; its third win out of three came after a solid performance in the first two periods on Detva's ice.
"We made full preparation for this match, and restrained their main attackers quite well," said Inner Mongolia coach Zheng Wei.
"He was unable to train because of pain in his lower back," Lasmar told a virtual news conference. "He's shown a small improvement today, but it is important to consider that less than 24 hours have passed [since the injury]. He's traveled by bus and plane to be here, which has made treatment difficult.
The 32-year-old made his 119th international appearance in Spain's 1-0 UEFA Nations League win at home to Switzerland on Saturday and is in line to start in Ukraine on Tuesday night, although he admits that the progress of players such as Mikel Merino and Rodrigo Hernandez means there is more competition in the central midfield role.
With the same three wins and one loss, both Beijing and Shanghai surpassed Inner Mongolia, which has won all its three games so far, ranking fourth and fifth respectively in the tables after the league's fourth round was over.
The 21-year-old Kenin, by contrast, has escaped some tough battles en route to Saturday's showdown as four of her six matches have been decided in the third set and in two matches she had to fight from one set down.
Atletico Madrid forward Luis Suarez had given the hosts the lead from the penalty spot at Estadio Centenario after a Sebastian Vegas handball just before halftime.
"What my family wanted was to see me happy. There are things that are not known, but at Barcelona they send you away to train separately... My wife was the one who saw that I was down and let me take the opportunity. When Atletico came looking for me, I didn't hesitate for a moment."
But in a statement, the AFA said the 26-year-old did not travel with the Albiceleste squad to Bolivia and would continue to receive treatment in Buenos Aires.