Siena Men’s Basketball shooting guard Nico Clareth did not participate in practice on Thursday due to a sprained right ankle, according to Mark Singelais of the Times-Union. He suffered the injury during a team practice on Wednesday and was seen using crutches two days prior to the first Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Playoff game.
According to the Fantasy Doctor’s Dr. Selene Parekh, Clareth’s ankle injury is likely just mild and the sophomore should be considered day-to-day. The swelling of the ankle will dictate his return.
Clareth’s availability in Saturday’s opening playoff game against Fairfield seems to be up in the air. The shooting guard currently sits second on the team in scoring, averaging 13.6 points per game. His scoring will be missed specifically because of how much Siena relies on its starting lineup to score. No one on the Saints bench averages more than four points per game, making for a tricky situation with the start of tournament play approaching.
Luckily for Siena, freshman guard Ashante Shivers has slowly been setting himself apart from the pack among the team’s bench players. In February, the freshman scored four or more points in six of the team’s seven games. He also notched a season-high 11 points in the team’s victory over Iona on Feb. 7.
Shivers will likely find himself starting for the Saints if Clareth if the team chooses to continue to rest him into the tournament.
Clareth leads the team in three-point attempts this season and the Saints will have to make up for that production. Shivers has connected on five of his last seven attempts from beyond the arc, deeming him a serious threat from deep if he starts on Saturday.
However, Siena may choose to lean on the team’s healthy members of the starting lineup rather than experimenting with a bench player in a playoff game.
While Clareth leads the team in three-point attempts, senior guard Marquis Wright leads Siena with 47 three-point field goal makes. Because this is his final season at Siena and he is the team’s leading scorer, you can rest easily knowing Wright’s usage rate will skyrocket should Clareth miss Saturday’s game. But that is still up in the air.