Trojan coach Tim Criswell said all the ligaments in his son’s left knee were torn and the kneecap was dislocated, but the No. 1 concern on Friday night when Riley Criswell went into emergency surgery was a ruptured artery that was blocking the blood flow to his lower leg.
“They’re really concerned that they’ve got to get that blood flow going or they’re going to have some major problems,” said Tim Criswell, who was driving back from Florida on Friday evening. “So they took him in to do emergency surgery. He’s probably been in surgery about an hour and 40 minutes [as of 11 p.m.], and they’re hoping to be done maybe by midnight. It’s just a bad deal, man. A real gruesome, bad injury.”
Tim Criswell described the play as a cheap shot by a frustrated player from the host school.
“The guy chased him down from behind and took him out in mid-air and when he landed, he landed on his left leg in an awkward position. He had no balance. As soon as he did it, there was no doubt it was bad. It looked like [South Carolina running back] Marcus Lattimore. I thought he broke his leg, but he didn’t break a bone. I don’t know if that’s good or not. If it was broke, it might have saved some of that other stuff,” Tim Criswell said.
“But they’re going to do this surgery and make sure they can get the blood flow down into his lower leg and then when they feel secure with all that, they’re going to go back and try to repair everything. The bottom line right now is, they’ve got to fix the artery situation.”
The Trojans were playing in the semifinal round late Friday evening, and Tim Criswell left his assistant coaches in charge to come back to be with his son during this difficult time.
“He’s in a world of hurt right now ... It’s just a bad deal, man. Just a bad deal,” the Trojan coach said. “He’s going to have a long, long road ahead of him.”
In other prep basketball action from Friday:
The Carrollton High School girls’ basketball team advanced into the championship round of the PeachStateBasketball.com Holiday Invitational at Holy Innocents’ in Atlanta, knocking off Smyrna (Tenn.) in a 52-44 semifinal showdown.
The Lady Trojans (9-1) held a slim lead through the opening half — taking a 12-9 advantage after the first quarter and a 30-29 edge into the half — and then held Smyrna to just 15 second-half points behind a strong defensive effort.
Carrollton placed three scorers in double figures, getting a big lift from junior guard Tatyana Jackson, who scored 17 points with six rebounds in the win.
“We got a very welcome offensive output from T.J., and I was really excited about her offense [Friday]. We needed that other scorer and she did a great job filling in gaps for us,” Lady Trojan coach Shon Thomaston said.
Senior guard Kenyata Hendrix and junior forward Brooklyn Emory both posted 15 points, with Hendrix adding six rebounds and six assists and Emory also pulled down six boards.
Carrollton will play for the championship in the Silver Bracket today at 3:45 p.m., though Thomaston was unsure of the opponent as of press time Friday evening since the other semifinal game was still being played.
“So we probably won’t even know until as soon as we get there,” Thomaston said.