The LaSalle Explorers got an unexpected boost on Wednesday when news emerged that 6-foot-11 sophomore center Steve Zack was cleared to return to action.
Now, it remains to be seen how much playing time or how much of an impact Zack will have on the Explorers and their Sweet 16 contest with Wichita State. However, his presence in the rotation could certainly be felt. Remember however, LaSalle has already won three games within the NCAA Tournament without Zack, making their run from the First Four round to Thursday night’s Sweet 16 contest.
On the season, Zack is averaging 6.4 points and 6.4 rebounds per game.
The news on Zack’s return came late into Wednesday’s practice, so if he is apart of the lineup and rotation, he will be taking the court with out having played or practice much since sustaining the injury. Zack has been out since Mar. 2 with a severe left foot sprain, but according to reports, he was looking good and back to his normal self late on Wednesday.
The Explorers have made an incredible run here in the tournament and LaSalle is hoping that that run can continue into this weekend. The Shockers however, are fresh off a victory over No. 1 Gonzaga, the top seed within the West Region and looking like a true threat themselves.
Believe it or not, we will have either a No. 9 or No. 13 seed playing in the Elite 8 with the right to advance to the Final Four this weekend. Thursday night however, will be the determining game that will decide which team will get that opportunity.
LaSalle and Wichita State are scheduled to tip-0ff at 10:17pm (EST) on TBS.
Follow Paul Seaver on Twitter: @PaulSeaverRS