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Malik Nichols of Hofstra out for season with knee injury

Hofstra Pride forward Malik Nichols looks for shooting

Hofstra Pride forward Malik Nichols looks for shooting space defended by Sacred Heart Pioneers forward Eyimofe Edukugho in the second half of an NCAA Division I men's basketball game at Mack Sports Complex on Monday, Dec. 28, 2015. Photo Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

Hofstra senior forward Malik Nichols suffered a knee injury that likely will end his college career during a win over William & Mary on Sunday, the school announced Tuesday. Nichols had played in all 20 games, averaging 5.2 points and 5.4 rebounds in 18.1 minutes.

“We are devastated for Malik,” coach Joe Mihalich said in a statement. “Malik is a huge part of our success this season with his incredible energy, and his contributions will be missed. Although he will not be on the court, we look forward to his energy and leadership assisting our team throughout the rest of the season.”

The loss of Nichols, Hofstra’s second-best rebounder per minute of playing time, is a major blow to a team that was using a seven-man rotation. The 6-6 Nichols was the top frontcourt substitute and an excellent defender, who could give fouls and add toughness.

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