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Men's basketball: Walton out in Preseason NIT opener

Profile image for By Brett Vito / Staff Writer
By Brett Vito / Staff Writer

North Texas was missing one of its key backcourt players late Monday night in a first-round game in the Preseason NIT against Alabama-Huntsville and could be without him for a while.

Senior guard Brandan Walton went down with an injury to his right foot while coming off a screen in the opening moments of the Mean Green’s season-opening 71-51 loss to 16th-ranked Creighton on Friday.

A UNT spokesman said Monday afternoon that Walton would miss not only UNT’s game Monday night but would also be out for a second-round game against Kansas State or Lamar today.

The Mean Green will return home following its game today and will not play again until its home opener against Cameron on Friday.

UNT’s team doctors will further evaluate Walton once UNT gets back to Denton.

Walton averaged 8.8 points a game last season, when he started 17 games and was the Mean Green’s best perimeter shooter. The JUCO transfer hit a team-high 54 3-pointers and shot 36.7 percent from behind the arc.

No other UNT player made more than 23 3-pointers last season.

Walton hit a 3-pointer with eight seconds left to give UNT a 65-62 win over Louisiana-Lafayette in the first round of the Sun Belt Conference tournament last season.

The injury is the latest to hit UNT early in the season. The Mean Green lost Justin Patton, a forward head coach Tony Benford said might have started UNT’s season opener, to a knee injury that will keep him out up to four weeks.