Wahoos hopeful for Kraus return in ACC Tournament

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- Michael Kraus is second on the Virginia men's lacrosse team with 51 points and fourth with 29 goals scored heading into the ACC tournament. That's despite missing the last three games.

Kraus is out with what the team is calling a lower extremity injury. He missed the regular season finale last year -- played after the ACC tournament -- with a concussion. This year, the timing of the injury is different, forcing the team to change personnel before the postseason begins.

"Everybody's just stepping up their game and everyone's being super unselfish and we knew that is a big void we need to fill," said senior midfielder Ryan Conrad. "I think we've done a great job. Mikey Herring's stepped in and done a great job and I think everybody's just kind of elevated their game."

Head coach Lars Tiffany said Kraus will be back "I hope soon. We'd love to have him back as soon as possible and I hope its next weekend."

The Cavaliers will play either four-seed Syracuse or five-seed North Carolina in the ACC semifinals on Saturday.

"We're obviously excited to have him back because he just makes our offense that much better," said junior midfielder Dox Aitken, "but I think his absence has forced everyone on the offensive end, all of our personnel to take a look at themselves and pick up their game another step to replace him for however long he's out for."

"Michael Kraus is one of the best attackmen in the country because he's got a good feel for it," Tiffany added. "He can just get to the goal and really put pressure on the defense."

Syracuse and North Carolina play on Thursday to determine who advances to the ACC semifinals. The Cavaliers are the top-seed in this year's tournament.