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Paige Bueckers to return for UConn against St. John’s

(Benjamin Solomon/Getty Images)

UConn announced Thursday that Paige Bueckers has been cleared to return to game action and will play in Friday’s game against St. John’s. The sophomore guard has been out since Dec. 5, when she was helped off the court during the Huskies’ matchup with Notre Dame.

Bueckers later had surgery on Dec. 13 to repair an anterior tibial plateau fracture in her left knee. A previously unannounced lateral meniscus tear was also repaired. The procedure has an eight-week projected post-operation recovery period. Previously, Bueckers’ father had expressed his concerns over her return, saying the original 6-8 week timeline seemed too short.

It has been 11 weeks since Bueckers had surgery and 12 since she’s seen game action.

Last week, the guard returned to practice with “some semblance of defense” and ability to “run up and down the floor a couple times…for a few minutes,” according to coach Geno Auriemma.

On Wednesday, Bueckers warmed up with the team ahead of their matchup against Marquette but was not available to play.

The Huskies have gone 15-4 in Bueckers’ absence and momentarily fell out of the top 10. The team has since rebounded and currently sits seventh.

Bueckers played in just six games before going down with her injury, averaging 21.2 points, 6.2 assists, 5.5 rebounds and 2.7 steals per game.