Stokes Sidelined By Stress Reaction In Right Shin

Sophomore center Kiah Stokes is annoyed. She is frustrated too with the latest setback she is being forced to overcome.

Stokes has not practiced since the weekend of Dec. 8-9 due to a stress reaction in her right shin. She will miss Wednesday’s game against Oakland at the XL Center and is listed as doubtful for Saturday’s game at Hartford. Her status for a showdown at No. 1 Stanford Dec. 29 is also in question.

“My shins have been bothering me for probably about a month and then one day at practice it just got really bad and I went to talk to (UConn athletic trainer) Rosemary (Ragle),’’ Stokes said. “And then she said to get a bone scan and X-rays. I was really upset. I called my mom and my dad. My mom sent me flowers and balloons that said `Get Well.’ She’s thoughtful like that.

“It started because of shin splints and it developed into a stress reaction. I guess they caught it early enough so it’s not a stress fracture. Basically, they said I have to rest it.’’

Freshman forward Morgan Tuck also will not play Wednesday. She is being hampered by a right knee bruise.

“Morgan did a little bit today,’’ UConn coach Geno Auriemma said. “She did some running, and she did some shooting drills. So we’ll see how she feels. She said her knee has been bothering her a little bit, but she can’t pinpoint exactly what happened or when it happened or anything like that. She just knows that it’s been sore a little bit, and hopefully we can take care of it before it becomes a lingering thing.

“But with Kiah we’ll see. When we get back from the holidays, and when we meet in California on the 26th, we’ll have a better idea.’’

Stokes, who has been wearing an air cast on her lower right leg since early last week to relieve pressure on her leg, dealt with an injury to her right foot/ankle last season. She played through the pain before ultimately undergoing surgery last May 4.

“Probably if I would’ve stopped and rested it before I might not have had to have surgery,’’ Stokes said. “So I just wanted to get checked out earlier I guess. It’s just annoying. That’s what it is. Working so hard and then to have surgery this summer and be out and kind of just working back, and then to get this. This one’s not going to be as long so it’s not that bad. But my teammates are behind me, which is the best part about it. And they know you better take care of it now because later on in the season they’re going to need me and I want to play. I don’t like being sidelined. But it’s just annoying that I keep getting all these setbacks.’’

Stokes said she hopes to be back in the next couple of weeks.