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Gophers women’s basketball loses Niamya Holloway to season-ending knee injury

The freshman forward from Eden Prairie was a candidate to log big minutes for Minnesota as a freshman

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MINNEAPOLIS — Niamya Holloway, one-fourth of coach Lindsay Whalen’s nationally ranked incoming freshman class at the University of Minnesota, has been lost for the season to a knee injury.

A 6-foot forward, Holloway averaged 16.9 points and 8.1 rebounds, and shot 62 percent from the field last season at Eden Prairie High School. On a team rebuilt almost entirely with freshmen and transfers, she was a strong candidate to log serious minutes for the Gophers.

Holloway will have season-ending surgery on her left knee in August. According to a team spokesperson, Holloway was injured outside of practice or team activities last week. Further details were unavailable.

In a statement, Whalen said the team was saddened to get the news.

“We are here to support Niamya every step of the way as she moves forward in this recovery process,” the coach said.

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Holloway is part of a recruiting class that was ranked as high as No. 10 nationally by ESPN when it was completed, joining guards Amaya Battle and Mara Braun and forward Mallory Heyer — four of the Gophers’ nine newcomers this season.

After a 15-18 season in 2021-22 that ended in the second round of the Women’s National Invitation Tournament, the Gophers lost six players to the NCAA transfer portal, including starting guards Jasmine Powell (Tennessee), Sara Scalia (Indiana) and starting forward Kadi Sissoko (USC). The strong freshman class is expected to help mitigate those losses.

After the Gophers’ first summer practice on June 13, Holloway said the transfers were “shocking — to say the least. But I think it’s more important that we push forward. We’re really excited about the culture we’re trying to build here.”

The Gophers’ 2022-23 scheduled has not been released but the team will begin its regular season on Nov. 7, and play an exhibition on Oct. 30.

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This story was written by one of our partner news agencies. Forum Communications Company uses content from agencies such as Reuters, Kaiser Health News, Tribune News Service and others to provide a wider range of news to our readers. Learn more about the news services FCC uses here.

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