Junior guard/forward Faith Masonius has been ruled out for the remainder of Maryland women’s basketball’s season after suffering a torn left ACL in Sunday's game at Indiana, head coach Brenda Frese confirmed during Wednesday’s media availability.
Masonius went down in pain with a non-contact injury about halfway through the third quarter against Indiana. She had to be helped off the floor by two staff members and did not return to the game. An MRI on Tuesday showed that Masonius tore her left ACL, per Frese.
“Obviously, received some tough news,” Frese said. “It was confirmed with a MRI yesterday that Faith Masonius has torn her left ACL in Sunday’s game. So, it was [a] non-contact injury. Obviously, we’re disappointed but blessed to really have a tremendous rehab team here that we know. Given the person that Faith is and how hard she works that we know she’ll be back and ready for us coming next season.”
At a minimum, Masonius’ injury has an incredible impact on the Terps’ rotation at large. With junior guard Diamond Miller returning from a knee injury, Maryland was finally at 100% health for the first time all season against the Hoosiers. Maryland’s rotation is now back down to seven players, barring a resurgence from an unlikely source.
In nine games this season, Masonius averaged 6.4 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. Masonius also was forced to miss a five-game stretch from Nov. 16 to Nov. 27 due to illness. Since Masonius did not play a game after the halfway point of the season, where Maryland is right about now, there is a possibility she could be eligible for a medical redshirt for this season, a team spokesperson confirmed to Testudo Times.
Masonius is a player whose impact goes far beyond her output in the box score. She brings incredible defensive intensity — Frese pinned her as the team’s best zone defender following the team’s win at James Madison on Nov. 14 — and high IQ play to both sides of the floor.
“Now as we just got Diamond back, to have a hit like this with Faith was obviously extremely disappointing,” Frese added. “But like we talked about today in practice is no one has to do it alone. I mean, it’s gonna have to be by committee... Her voice, her energy, the way she leads for us, I mean, really, you know, needing that ownership to be kind of be picked up collectively by the team.”
There is no doubt that Maryland will have to rally around Masonius, but it still has at least 14 games — depending on what happens with the postponed Illinois game — left in Big Ten play.
“First of all, we’re there for her for anything she needs,” graduate student guard Katie Benzan said. “Whether it’s running and going to grab her meals so she can rest up and keep that leg elevated. But also like on the court, we just, we’re playing for her. We’re all disappointed that she’s not able to bring her energy out on the court, and we know she’s gonna bring that same energy and that same positivity on the bench.”
Editor’s note: This story has been updated with information about the possibility of medical redshirt eligibility.