Sophomore Alexis Tate to Miss 2002-03 Season with Knee Injury

Nov. 21, 2002

TEMPE, Ariz. - Sophomore forward Alexis Tate will miss the 2002-03 season with a major knee injury, Arizona State head women's basketball coach Charli Turner Thorne announced Thursday.

Tate, a 6-4 forward from Escondido, Calif., tore the meniscus in her left knee and also has a stretched anterior cruciate ligament. She will have surgery to repair both the meniscus and the ACL. This marks the second season-ending knee injury of the year for the Sun Devils who lost their top returning scorer and rebounder, junior guard/forward Betsy Boardman, to an ACL tear on October 13.

'This is another big loss for our team because Alexis had worked so hard in the off-season to take over some of the rebounding and inside scoring we lost to graduation last year,' Turner Thorne said. 'Alexis is a very talented player with great skills and has the work ethic and determination to be a great player. After being limited by injuries last season and now having a season-ending injury this year, I know Alexis will come back next year even stronger and more ready to contribute than ever. For our young team, we just became even younger, but our players are going to have to step up and deal with this adversity as an opportunity.'

Tate played in 26 games for the Sun Devils last year as a true freshman but was limited to an average of 4.8 minutes per game by a number of injuries throughout the season. She did, however, show an ability to make a huge impact in her limited minutes, averaging 1.3 points and 1.3 rebounds per game. Coming out of high school, Tate attended the 2000 Nike All-American Camp and was ranked 60th in the country by Blue Star before missing her senior season with an ACL tear suffered in a summer tournament.

With the loss of Tate and Boardman, Arizona State returns just one starter and five letterwinners from its 2002 Pac-10 Tournament Championship and NCAA Tournament squad which tied the school record for wins with a 25-9 record. The 2002-03 Sun Devil roster will feature one seniors, two juniors (one a junior college transfer), three sophomores and five true freshmen.

The Sun Devils open the regular season tomorrow, Friday, Nov. 22, with Chicago State at 8 p.m. at Wells Fargo Arena. The Chicago State game will be part of a doubleheader with the ASU men's team, which opens its season with Morehead State at 5:30 p.m. that night. Fans purchasing a ticket for the men's game will receive free admission to the women's game, which will tip off 30 minutes after the conclusion of the men's game.

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