NCAA Basketball: Saint Mary's vs. Murray State with Holt, Dellavedova Injured

Michael CullenCorrespondent IFebruary 17, 2012

Sophomore Stephen Holt was the defensive leader among the Gaels
Sophomore Stephen Holt was the defensive leader among the GaelsEthan Miller/Getty Images

Saint Mary’s lost their first home game of the season this past Wednesday against Loyola Marymount University. To make matters worse, two of their three starting guards were injured at a position that they were already thin at after Paul McCoy went down before the season started.

Matthew Dellavedova has the less serious injury of the two, but it is looking like he will miss this Saturday’s Bracket Buster game against Murray State.  Stephen Holt, on the other hand, has a torn MCL. It will not require surgery, but he could miss the rest of the season. This is a huge blow to the Gaels, as Holt leads the West Coast Conference in steals and is the best defensive player on the team.

The two injuries might leave St. Mary’s with only two guards available this weekend at Murray State: Jorden Page and redshirt freshman Zach Sanchez. Sanchez has only played in four games this season—all non-conference.

It will be very interesting to see how coach Randy Bennett handles the starting lineup and rotation against Murray State. Expect to see senior Clint Steindl draw the tough assignment of guarding Isaiah Canaan with Holt out.

It’s tough to see Zach Sanchez getting the start, but Randy Bennett doesn’t have many other choices. Even if he doesn’t get the start, he will most likely get a lot of minutes.

Forwards Mitchell Young and Beau Levesque will need to step up. Bennett could also look to seldom-used players Tim Williams, Eividas Petrulis, and Kyle Rowley. Beau Levesque and Petrulis are probably the only two capable of playing the small forward position. However, Rob Jones could take that spot, which would allow Rowley or Williams to move to the 4 or 5 position.