Tennessee basketball stayed unbeaten on the 2023-24 season by defeating Wofford 82-61 at Thompson-Boling Arena at Food City Center on Tuesday night.
After dealing with injuries for much of the preseason, the injury bug bit the Vols again against the Terriers. Freshman guard Freddie Dilione suffered an injury in the first half and did not return to the game. Dilione played just over two and a half minutes against Wofford and recorded a rebound and no other stats.
The combo guard exited the game with 10:02 remaining in the first half before not returning. There was no obvious play that Dilione suffered the injury but he was wearing a boot on the sideline in the second half. Tennessee coach Rick Barnes said it’s a reoccurring issue for the talented guard.
“He’s been having problems with … probably playing with fasciitis and he’s been working hard the last couple weeks,” Barnes said postgame. “His arches have been hurting him, and he just said he felt like something popped and we actually had a MRI scheduled for tomorrow morning anyway so it comes at a good time. He’ll be able to get it (MRI) early in the morning and we’ll see.”
Dilione was the highest rated member of Tennessee’s 2023 recruiting class before early enrolling last January and redshirting last season. Expectations were high for Dilione’s redshirt freshman season but the North Carolina native has had a rocky road to open the season.
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The combo guard scored seven points in 16 minutes of action in Tennessee’s season opening win over Tennessee Tech but played just three minutes against Wisconsin. Dilione is fighting for playing time in a very busy backcourt including Zakai Zeigler, Santiago Vescovi, Jahmai Mashack and Jordan Gainey.
If Dilione misses extend time with an injury, those four players could all earn more minutes while freshman shooting guard Cameron Carr could also see an increased role.
Tennessee has six days off before they travel to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. The Vols face Syracuse in their first game next Monday, Nov. 20 at 2 p.m. ET.