Kent State's overtime victory at Youngstown State on Wednesday came at a cost, as freshman forward Chris Ortiz fractured a bone in his foot during the first half and must undergo surgery.
Ortiz was injured when he stepped on a YSU player's foot.
"From what I understand, if things turn out the way we think they will, he'll likely be out six weeks," said Golden Flashes coach Rob Senderoff. "He broke a small bone in his foot, and they're going to insert a pin. Doctors feel that with your foot you could let it heel and not put a pin in it, but with the foot you're better off letting it heal around the pin because it will help it stay stronger."
Ortiz moved into the starting lineup three games ago against Bethune-Cookman and has remained there after producing 13 points and eight rebounds in that victory. Ortiz is averaging 5.7 points and 3.7 rebounds per contest for the Flashes (5-2), who were 3-0 with him in the lineup.
"I think it's probably the first time that he's ever been hurt," said Senderoff. "He's OK. We'll talk with him some more (today) and see how he's doing."
Ortiz replaced junior Darren Goodson in the starting lineup, but Senderoff said several different players may receive starts with Ortiz sidelined, including Goodson and fellow juniors Bryson Pope and Melvin Tabb.
"I think it's going to be a game-by-game decision," said Senderoff. "For this particular game (Saturday against Princeton), I think we'll start Bryson and play with four guards. There may be times that we play Darren, there may be times that we play Melvin. We'll have to explore a little bit, because Chris was playing a lot of minutes of late. It's a significant loss."