Clemson's Stitt To Miss Two Weeks After Knee Injury

Freshman point guard has started all 20 games this season, averaging 8.9 points and 3.1 assists

Jan. 31, 2008

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - Clemson point guard Demontez Stitt will miss at least two weeks after having arthroscopic surgery Thursday to repair torn cartilage in a knee.

Stitt, a freshman, has started all 20 games this season, averaging 8.9 points and 3.1 assists.

Stitt was injured during practice Wednesday, coach Oliver Purnell said. Stitt hurt his knee as he tried to make a cut, Clemson athletic spokesman Tim Bourret said.

In Stitt, the Tigers lose one of their most reliable foul shooters. He's hit better than 80 percent of his free throws, second best on the team.

"Obviously, this is a big loss for us, but thankfully only for a short period of time," Purnell said. "This means everyone now has to hitch up their belt so that as a team we can make up for his absence."

Clemson (15-5, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) faces Boston College on Saturday at Littlejohn Coliseum.

Stitt's loss is the latest injury to hit the Tigers.

Forward James Mays has played with his left hand heavily bandaged since fracturing a bone in early January. He is also recovering from a hip injury that caused him to miss five games earlier this season.

This past Sunday, forward Trevor Booker sprained his ankle in a 75-72 loss at Miami. Additional X-rays taken this week showed Booker had nothing more serious than a sprain. Purnell had said they would bring Booker along slowly this week and listed him as questionable for Saturday's game.

Booker was Clemson's leading rebounder and second leading scorer.

Clemson opened the season 12-1, but has gone 3-4 since.

Without Stitt, Clemson's other guard, senior Cliff Hammonds, would take control at the point. K.C. Rivers, Clemson's top scorer, would fill Hammonds' shooting guard role and forward Sam Perry would enter the starting lineup.

Rivers and Terrence Oglesby, the Tigers' 3-point shooting specialist, would also work some at the point.

Should Booker not play, reserve forward Raymond Sykes would most likely start in his place. Sykes has started six games this season and averaged 5.2 points and 2.6 rebounds.

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