St. Cloud State will be without its leading scorer for the rest of the men’s basketball season.
Senior forward Theo Rothstein found out early Wednesday morning that he had torn the ACL in his right knee. He also has a partial tear of the meniscus and the MCL in the knee.
Rothstein, a St. Michael-Albertville graduate, will miss the rest of the year and will face a 6- to 9-month rehab.
The 6-foot-6 Rothstein was averaging 17 points a game, which was fifth-best in the NSIC this season. He’ll undergo surgery to repair the ACL on Tuesday.
“We were hoping it wouldn’t be a full tear of the ACL, but that’s what it ended up being,” Rothstein said. “At first they thought I had an MCL, ACL and meniscus complete tears, but it just ended up being the ACL that was fully torn.”
Rothstein hopes to play overseas next season.
“My doctor told me I could be completely healthy in six months. I want to take the shot of playing overseas,” Rothstein said.
“As a senior, this is right where I wanted this team to be this year.
“It sucks I won’t be able to help them out, but I know these guys can do it.”
Rothstein believes he first tore the knee while diving for a loose ball late in the second half last Friday night against MSU-Moorhead. He landed on the scorer’s table on the play and came out of the game. He came back in and went down in a heap after jumping to defend a jump shot on the last play of the game against the Dragons. That’s when he fully tore the ligament.
“I kept playing on it and probably gradually tore it all the way through,” Rothstein said. “It felt tight, but there was no pain. I jumped on it funny and that was it.”
Sophomore post James Fort will step into Rothstein’s starting role. Fort had a combined 26 points in two wins last weekend.
St. Cloud State head coach Kevin Schlagel says his team will miss Rothstein, and not just for his offense.
“It’s not just the scoring, it’s his defense and his rebounding that we’ll miss,” Schlagel said. “He’s our most versatile athlete. He’s the most difficult guy to match up with for our opponents. We’re going to lose a lot.
“I feel for Theo. He’s put in five years and he’s given everything he’s had for us. You hate to see anybody get hurt, especially a kid who plays with such great passion and energy.”