Kansas State guard Cartier Diarra, has suffered a hand injury that will require surgery and keep him out of action for an undetermined period of time, K-State coach Bruce Weber announced Tuesday.
Diarra, a 6-foot-4 sophomore, from Florence, S.C., has been the K-State's top reserve, averaging 6.3 points and 3.2 rebounds a game. He played a key reserve role last week in victories over Kansas and Baylor as the Wildcats took sole possession of first place in the Big 12.
"Obviously I'm disappointed for Cartier and his family," Weber said in a statement. "He has worked hard on the court this year and I know he will work equally hard to come back strong.
"Our team has faced adversity many times this season and this is just another hurdle they must climb."
Diarra has played in all 23 games for the Wildcats with seven starts, including all six when forward Dean Wade was out with a foot injury. He had been especially effective of late off the bench, scoring in double figures the last four games on 51.7 percent shooting with eight 3-pointers.
He scored 11 points last Tuesday against Kansas, with two key 3-pointers and an emphatic breakaway windmill dunk that sealed the 74-67 victory. He followed that up with 10 points Saturday as the Wildcats rallied past Baylor, 70-63, starting the comeback with a 3-pointer and also producing a highlight-reel assist where falling out of bounds under his own basket he fired a long pass to Barry Brown for a dunk.
Last year it was Diarra who stepped in when point guard Kamau Stokes suffered a foot injury, making 22 starts and averaging 7.1 points. He is averaging 25 minutes a game this year, fifth on the team.