WCAV-WVAW-WAHU | Charlottesville, Virginia | Sports

Bennett: Harris a Game-Time Decision for Clemson

The Virginia basketball team may be even more short-handed for Tuesday night's game at Clemson.

Coach Tony Bennett said early Monday afternoon that sophomore guard Joe Harris is a game-time decision for Tuesday. Harris broke a bone in his left (non-shooting) hand during the Cavaliers' 70-52 loss at North Carolina on Saturday.

"We'll monitor it, and he hasn't done anything yet. So really, it will be a game-time decision," Bennett said Monday, before the team left for Clemson. "Seeing what he can tolerate, where he's at. He's tough, and it's not on his shooting hand, and we'll hope for the best."

The Cavaliers dropped to No. 22 in both major college basketball polls on Monday following the Carolina loss. The 18-point deficit was UVa's worst of the season.

Harris is second on the Cavaliers in both scoring (12.5 ppg) and rebounding (4.1 rpg) this season, and leads the team in three-point shooting (41.2 percent). He had eight points and five rebounds in Saturday's loss, but complained after the game that he had trouble squeezing his left hand.

Harris matched a career high with five three-pointers, and finished with 19 points in Virginia's 65-61 win at home over Clemson two weeks ago.

The Cavaliers hadn't practiced when Bennett addressed reporters on Monday, which meant Harris hadn't been able to try playing while wearing a protective pad on the injured hand. The team planned to practice after arriving at Clemson on Monday evening.

"I think it's premature right now to say how much it'll affect him; how much it'll affect us. And another opportunity certainly for someone to step up," Bennett said. "But he'll run through a wall. He'll do whatever you ask him. I think he would play with a broken arm, if he could. He'll just keep giving you everything he's got, and I love that about Joe."

Freshman guard Malcolm Brogdon would probably get his first college start if Harris can't play. Brogdon is averaging 6.6 points-per-game off the bench this season. That would leave fellow first-years Darion Atkins and Paul Jesperson as the only scholarship players on the UVa bench.


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