CRAWFORD | Louisville faces tough challenge -- Snider out 2-3 we - WDRB 41 Louisville News

CRAWFORD | Louisville faces tough challenge -- Snider out 2-3 weeks with hip injury

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Louisville guard Quentin Snider is out 2-3 weeks with a hip injury. (WDRB photo by Eric Crawford) Louisville guard Quentin Snider is out 2-3 weeks with a hip injury. (WDRB photo by Eric Crawford)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — If you had to pick one player the University of Louisville basketball team couldn't afford to lose, there would be no question: Junior point guard Quentin Snider is the most valuable player on this team, by a long shot.

That’s why Monday’s announcement that Snider will miss the next two to three weeks with a hip flexor strain suffered early in the second half of Saturday’s win over Duke’s is particularly bad news for the Cardinals. Rest and rehabilitation are expected to heal the injury for Snider, who won't require surgery, according to a release from the team.

Injuries are never good — but losing your starting point guard in the middle of an inch-by-inch slog in Atlantic Coast Conference play is of particular concern to the Cardinals, who have scratched back from an 0-2 league start to win three straight.

Snider’s backup at the position, graduate transfer Tony Hicks, is inexperienced in coach Rick Pitino’s system, but will have to step forward in a big way, as will David Levitch, and sophomore Donovan Mitchell may have to log time handling the ball, as well.

The Cardinals face Clemson at home on Thursday, then travel to No. 10-ranked Florida State Saturday in a quick-turnaround game against one of the ACC’s top teams. Next week, they’re at Pittsburgh and at home against North Carolina State.

Snider came down hard on his hip following a layup with 18:38 left, but played through the pain in a splendid performance — finishing with 13 points and six assists, and drilling a big three-pointer with 1:36 left to stretch Louisville’s lead to 10 and put the Blue Devils away.

Pitino has been effusive in his praise of Snider all season, and that’s not easy territory for a point guard to achieve. Snider leads the team in minutes and in ACC play, has shot 50 percent (12 of 24) from three-point range, fourth-best in the league.

Snider is the Cardinals’ assist leader and second-leading scorer, averaging 12.1 points, 4.0 assists and 2.6 rebounds.  He is third in the ACC and 32nd in the nation in assist-to-turnovers ratio (2.88). In the last three games, Snider has averaged 15.7 points and six assists.

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