UConn leading-scorer Price leaves game after injuring left knee

Updated: March 21, 2008, 9:29 PM ET
Associated Press

TAMPA, Fla. -- One bad step ended A.J. Price's season, and without their leading scorer, the Connecticut Huskies simply couldn't recover.

Price left the Huskies' NCAA tournament game against San Diego with a left knee injury midway through the first half. The 13th-seeded Toreros went on to stun the fourth-seeded Huskies 70-69 in overtime of a first-round game in the West regional.

"It's very difficult to deal with," Price said. "We had a good season, not a great season, a good season."

Price was being taken for tests after the game, according to a Connecticut spokesman, and a preliminary diagnosis suggested the standout point guard may have torn ligaments in his knee.

"That wasn't why we lost," Huskies coach Jim Calhoun said.

Price landed awkwardly on his knee while driving to the basket with 9:39 to play in the first half. He was carried off the floor, examined on the bench and then helped to the locker room for more tests. He briefly returned to the bench on crutches and with a giant ice pack strapped to his knee, but wasn't around for the start of the second half and said afterward it was "extremely difficult" to watch.

"I felt everything go wrong in my knee and I took the pressure off of it as fast as I could," Price said.

Price entered the game averaging 14.9 points, with a team-leading 191 assists. He was scoreless and the game was tied at 16 when the injury happened.

"It was pretty tough for us," UConn center Hasheem Thabeet said. "His presence today wasn't there."

The injury is another chapter of Price's rocky history at UConn.

He missed what would have been his freshman season after suffering a brain hemorrhage, and later was suspended for another season after involvement in the theft of four laptop computers. But with those woes behind, UConn was touting Price as an All-America candidate this season.

"To go down in an NCAA tournament game, I feel really badly for him," Calhoun said.


Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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