Thursday , Feb , 12 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Missouri loses Kleiza for season

Columbia, MO (Sports Network) – The Missouri Tigers will be without freshman
forward Linas Kleiza for the remainder of the season due to a right shoulder
injury.

Kleiza has sat out the Tigers’ last four contests with the dislocated
shoulder, an injury he suffered in the closing minutes of a January 28 contest
at Colorado. He will have surgery some time within the next two weeks and will
then need three-to-four months to rehabilitate.

“We have met with Linas’ family and our medical staff here at Mizzou and we
believe that the severity of the injury would have reduced his effectiveness
on the court, making immediate surgery necessary,” Missouri head coach Quinn
Snyder said. “We feel that this is the best option for Linas’ career and his
eventual contribution to our program. We will miss his intensity, but I know
we will continue to battle and stay together.”

The 6-foot-8 Kleiza was fourth on the team with 11.1 points per game before
the injury. He was also tops on the squad with an average of 8.4 rebounds each
contest.

The disappointing Tigers, who entered the season with extremely high
expectations, are just 10-10 overall and 5-5 in the Big 12 conference this
season.

MISSOURI