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Woodson's Schoof injured, scheduled for surgery

Just when things started to take a positive turn for No. 15 W.T. Woodson's basketball program, the Cavaliers were hit with a major setback.

The Cavaliers got back star guard Max Lenox this season after he sat out all of last year with a knee injury, but just this week they lost junior guard-forward John Schoof -- a versatile player who I had pegged to be this season's breakout candidate. What appeared to be a typical ankle sprain on Tuesday night, turned out to be torn ligaments during a routine checkup with doctors on Wednesday morning.

According to W.T. Woodson coach Doug Craig, Schoof tore two ligaments in his left ankle and dislocated a bone as well. He'll have surgery on Friday and could return in 10 weeks.

"The good thing about John's game is that he's not a guy that relies on his athletic ability," said Craig. "So he should be able to get back into the swing of things pretty quickly."

212 Schoof.jpg

You might have read about Schoof in today's Washington Post basketball preview, in which I wrote:

Schoof, a versatile scorer with an in-depth understanding of playing without the ball, is expected to be the region’s breakout player. His presence will take pressure off of Lenox, a senior who is a regional player of the year candidate and could give W.T. Woodson a shot to break T.C. Williams’s four-year, 71-game conference winning streak.

Here's why this is so difficult for Cavaliers fans to stomach.

The Cavaliers managed a 16-10 finish without Lenox last year, but had he been able to play, Woodson would have been a regional title contender. With Lenox back, the Cavaliers were all set to right last year's wrongs and make a playoff push.

Lenox and Schoof were a perfect compliment to each other. Schoof is an inside and outside versatile threat who was drawing high praise from every coach I talked to in the preseason.

Schoof had already received an offer from Lafayette and Princeton was recruiting him as well. Craig had to call recruiters at Lehigh, UNC-Wilmington and Holy Cross and tell them not to come see Schoof this week.

Recently, I got a chance to see him in action during a Sunday morning workout session at Evolution Basketball in Springfield, where he works out with trainer Alex Harris and several other area standouts like Chantilly's 7-footer John Manning, Gonzaga's Ben Dickinson and Gwynn Park's Brandon Ford.

"We thought it was a typical ankle sprain. We were thinking he wasn't going to be full strength for the Paul VI game," said Harris. "Next morning I got a phone call from [Schoof] at 10:30 in the morning. It's torn ligaments in his ankle. As of right now, he's looking to have surgery and to get into the rehab process as soon as possible."

Photo by John Harris

"We've been through this before," said Craig. "A lot of people wrote us off with Max's injury last year and we still had a good year. We should be able to overcome. Now somebody else has to step up."

Lenox managed 24 points, eight rebounds, five steals and five assists in last night's 52-43 victory over Woodbridge.

Lenox will have to step up his game to carry the No. 15 Cavaliers (1-0) through a tough matchup against Paul VI in Friday'sThe Red Jenkins Tipoff Classic at Woodson.

Here's some potential story lines to follow:

Game 1: Mt. Vernon vs. PVI
Defending VIS Champs vs. defending National District Champs.

Game 2: Woodbridge vs. W.T. Woodson
Nice matchup at PG between Max Lenox (WTW) and Darius Smith (Woodbridge)

Game 3: Woodbridge vs. Mt. Vernon
Niagara recruit Skylar Jones (Mount Vernon) in action.

Game 4: PVI vs. W.T. Woodson
A meeting over neighborhood rivals and WCAC vs. Northern Region

Check out The Post's all new In-season All-met team.

By B.J. Koubaroulis  |  December 3, 2009; 10:18 AM ET
Categories:  AAA Concorde District , AAA Liberty District , AAA National District , AAA Patriot District  
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Next: Forecasting Saturday’s Division 6 state semifinal

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