Metro area teams hit by the injury bug
Not a good sight in some of the metropolitan area training rooms right now. As was noted on this site yesterday, St. John's has lost Justin Burrell for the near future due to a collision with teammate Sean Evans in practice, resulting in three broken bones in his face. He's at least out for the Aeropostale Holiday Festival this weekend, but the Red Storm were able to take care of an equally shorthanded Marist team with relative ease. They face a solid Virginia Tech team in Sunday's final.Also of note for the Red Storm on Saturday was the play of forwards Sean Evans (19 points, 13 rebounds) and D.J. Kennedy (11 points, 14 rebounds). Last week with the loss of Anthony Mason Jr. it was Paris Horne stepping up; with two more sophomores looking to make an impact in the wake of Burrell going down, this could be a very good development as the Red Storm get closer to Big East play.
Marist was without point guard David Devezin for the second consecutive game due to an injured heel, so the quicker they get him back into the lineup the better for a team that struggled for 44 points on Saturday. But in a bit of good news, according to Fox Sports center Casiem Drummond will be transferring to the school from Villanova. He'll have to sit out a year, beginning with the spring semester, but should be ready to play at the end of the 2009 fall semester. Marist will take on a Columbia squad that gave Virginia Tech a battle in Sunday's consolation game in the Garden.
As for Seton Hall, they were without the services of big man John Garcia due to a knee injury suffered in their win at St. Peter's last week. Was his absence the only reason why the Pirates lost to IUPUI at the buzzer on Saturday night? No, but it surely didn't help. They're now essentially down to two big men that head coach Bobby Gonzalezcan look to for some bulk: Brandon Walters and Mike Davis. Those two combined for twenty-four minutes, six points and five rebounds (17 minutes, 6 pts and 5 rebounds from Davis off the bench). And with reports being that Garcia could be sidelined for up to three weeks (he's had injury issues in the past as well), the Pirates aren't in a very good position when it comes to their rotation. A combination of hoping that Walters and Davis improve exponentially before Big East play along with the NCAA clearing Melvyn Oliver to play isn't a good spot to find yourself in this time of the year.