Sunday, December 26, 2010

Peacocks Suffer Loss of Jenkins, Again

It's the day after Christmas in upstate New York, a blizzard is approaching and at least some games in the New York Metropolitan area are being postponed due to inclement weather there. Among those is the Fordham women's tournament, in which Siena is scheduled to compete, which has been pushed back a day to this Wednesday and Thursday, instead of Tuesday and Wednesday.

But those are the inconveniences of sports in the great Northeast in the winter. No big deal.

The holiday season, though, wasn't very kind to one MAAC member, the Saint Peter's men's basketball team.

The Peacocks' standout guard, 6-2 senior Wesley Jenkins, a first-team preseason all-star selection, might miss the rest of the season after reinjuring his knee in a 61-55 victory at Binghamton on Dec. 21. The victory was Saint Peter's fifth straight (giving it a 7-4 overall record) and appeared to have it poised for chasing the conference's regular-season title.

Instead it appears that the team could be without its top player for the remainder of the season.

Jenkins underwent an MRI just before Christmas (no results yet), and there have been reports concerning speculation that he has sprined the MCL and ACL in the same knee that he injured in the preseason. If the preliminary diagnosis is correct, he would be lost for approximately six weeks, effectively ending his season.

SPC has won five straight and six of seven since Jenkins returned from his preseason injury. There have been signs that SPC was beginning to hit its offensive stride. It was a welcome sign just as heavy league action is set to begin in January.

If there is a bright side to this mishap, it would be that the injury happened when it did. Jenkins is eligible for a medical redshirt under NCAA rules if he wishes to return next season. There is also a slim possibility that the injury is not as bad as originally feared and he could be back sooner and not lost for this season.

And, that's not all.

Senior 6-7 forward Ryan Bacon, the team’s best big man, was also injured late in the Binghamton contest and he is expected to be out a minimum of two weeks with a sprained foot. There's a chance he could return for the resumption of league competition next week.

Even without Jenkins, Saint Peter's is likely to be competitive this year. But with him it was a legitimate championship contender.

In its first game without Jenkins since the injury it lost a 55-52 decision to Rutgers. The Peacocks return to action against Lehigh in a non-league game on Wednesday before resuming conference competition on Monday when they host Canisius.

With the strong orientation for defense that Dunne has preached since his arrival, I expect SPC to hang tough and remain the type of team no one wants to play, with or

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