Sunday, March 25, 2012

Wrist Watch II: Marshall Practices (Update #3845)

(AP Photo)
AP: Kendall Marshall participated in portions of practice for North Carolina on Saturday, though a decision on his status for Sunday’s Midwest Regional final against Kansas will not be made until shortly before tipoff.

Marshall was fitted for the brace he would wear to play on Saturday morning. He did not take part in any contact during practice at the Edward Jones Dome, but was involved in the walkthrough and shoot-around, and had his wrist wrapped in an ice pack in the locker room afterward.

“The range of motion is getting gradually better every day, and that’s a positive sign,” Marshall said. “There’s been tremendous improvement every 24 hours.”

Marshall spent Friday night’s game against Ohio sitting on the bench tutoring freshman Stilman White whenever he checked out. White played 32 minutes—more than the previous six games combined—and had two points and six assists without a turnover.

Marshall is averaging about eight points and 10 assists for the Tar Heels (32-5), and has scored in double figures for six straight games. While forward Harrison Barnes and Tyler Zeller provide most of the scoring, it’s Marshall who helms their fast-paced attack.

(Robert Willett/Raleigh News & Observer)
The sophomore was a second-team all-ACC pick whose 351 assists in 36 games represents the best season total in league history and fourth-most in NCAA history.

“Today is the first day he bounced the ball, today is the first day he caught a ball, today is the first day he shot a ball,” Tar Heels coach Roy Williams said. “We kept him out of all the live stuff. Now we want to see if it bothers him or if it swells up or pains him.

“We’ll do the same thing at shoot-around tomorrow,” Williams said. “Then, there are two things that have to happen. One, he has to feel comfortable that he’s not hurt, and two, I have to decide can he be effective in a game with his situation.”

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