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Gazette staff's Division I hoops
by Gazette staff

Division I hoops

A Daily Gazette sports blog
Our staff covers Siena and UAlbany

Siena's Brookins back at practice

ALBANY — There was an encouraging sign for Siena this afternoon when redshirt sophomore guard Rakeem Brookins returned to practice after re-injuring his back in the late stages of a loss at Maine on Nov. 25.

Brookins, who isn’t scheduled to get back in the lineup until the Dec. 29 home game against LaSalle, said his recovery is ahead of schedule, and he was cleared by the team doctor to do as much as he felt comfortable with at practice.

The Saints, who open the MAAC season against Rider at 7 Friday night at the Times Union Center, desperately need any infusion of offense they can get. After scoring just 43 points at St. Bonaventure on Tuesday, Siena is averaging 57.2 points per game, eighth in the 10-team MAAC.

“It’s a good sign ... it’s a good sign for all of us,” Brookins said with a chuckle as he prepared to take the practice floor. “The doctors told me if you feel good, see what happens.”

“I’m not going to adjust my game, because I have to play how I play. I try not to worry about it as much. It can change my ways, instead of driving as much, just shooting all the time. I don’t want to babysit it, but I do have to be careful.”

Brookins missed all of last season with bulging and herniated discs in his back. He sat out the first three games of this season while suspended, then averaged 11.7 ppg in three games before getting hurt again in the Maine game.

Follow Mike MacAdam on Twitter at @Mike_MacAdam.

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