UConn womens star Bueckers has ankle surgery

    Mechelle Voepel covers the WNBA, women’s college basketball, and other college sports for espnW. Voepel began covering women’s basketball in 1984, and has been with ESPN since 1996.

UConn women’s basketball guard Paige Bueckers, who won all but one of the national player of the year awards as a freshman this past season, had surgery on her right ankle, the school announced Saturday.

The procedure, which took place Friday, was to repair an osteochondral defect on her right ankle. Bueckers is expected to be ready for preseason workouts in September. Osteochondral defects are described as joint damage involving the bone and cartilage.

After rolling her right ankle against Tennessee on Jan. 21, Bueckers missed her only game of the season on Jan. 23 vs. Georgetown. She returned to the lineup on Jan. 28 vs. Arkansas. A UConn spokeswoman said the ankle issue was pre-existing even before the Tennessee game.

Bueckers led UConn in scoring (20.0 PPG), assists (5.8 APG), steals (2.3 SPG) and minutes played (36.2) this past season. She won the Naismith, Wooden, AP, espnW and USBWA player of the year awards for the Huskies, who finished 28-2 and lost in the national semifinals to Arizona. Freshman are not eligible to win the other major award, the Wade Trophy.

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