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Arizona point guard Kerr Kriisa to miss Utah game

It’s not because of COVID, the team says

arizona-wildcats-mens-basketball-kerr-kriisa-injury-utah-utes-pac12-mckale-justin-kier Photo by Rebecca Noble/Getty Images

Arizona will have a different starting lineup for the first time this season for Saturday night’s game with Utah, as sophomore point guard Kerr Kriisa will not play.

Kriisa, who played Thursday with his left wrist and thumb taped, had a season-low 2 points on 1-of-4 shooting but chipped in a career-high 10 assists. For the season he is averaging 11.7 points, 2.5 rebounds and 5.4 assists, tops in the Pac-12.

In his place will be sixth-year senior Justin Kier, who started 119 games at George Mason and Georgia before coming to the UA this season. Kier is coming off a 14-point performance in Thursday’s 76-55 win over Colorado, his most with the Wildcats, and is averaging 8.1 points while shooting a team-best 39.5 percent from 3-point range.

Without Kriisa, Arizona will be down to seven main rotation players. It had been going with nine before Kim Aiken Jr. stepped away for personal reasons in early December.