Star guard Kerner out for the season

Zach Smart

The Quinnipiac women’s basketball team suffered a sharp blow last week when it learned point guard Erin Kerner will miss the remainder of the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in her right knee.

The injury occurred during the first half of a tight 54-50 victory over conference foe Mount St. Mary’s on Feb. 3. She was helped off the court and did not return.

Kerner’s MRI test took place earlier this week and she’s projected to have surgery next week.

The sophomore standout and 2005-06 Northeast Conference Rookie of the Year was leading the Bobcats in scoring (17.7), assists (3.5), and free throw percentage (87.0). The first team All-Conference candidate was the leading scorer in 13 of her 21 games with the Bobcats this season, underscored by a 30-point performance at Robert Morris on Jan. 8.

“I’m disappointed that I won’t be able to play the rest of the season,” said Kerner, sporting an ankle brace before a horde of reporters.

“I’m confident my teammates will finish the season strong. I’ll be cheering them on.”

While no player will be able to fill the leadership and scoring void left by Kerner, Quinnipiac has a bevy of guards to help cushion the loss.

Sophomores Brianna Rooney and Megan Barnum are both capable of operating the offense in place of Kerner, as they did in the Bobcats’ 78-67 loss at St. Francis (N.Y.) and 62-55 win at Central Connecticut State. Sophomore off guard Mandy Pennewell stepped up in her teammate’s place against Central on Saturday, scoring a career-high 34 points.