KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A member of the Tennessee women’s basketball team will temporarily step away from the team, the university announced Wednesday.
Head coach Kellie Harper announced that redshirt sophomore Marta Suárez will return home to Oviedo, Spain due to personal reasons. She will remain enrolled at the university and continue her studies remotely.
Suárez is the first Lady Vols player in program history from Spain and just the fourth international player to suit up for the women’s basketball team.
“Following a period of reflection, I have made the difficult decision to temporarily step away from the game of basketball and return to my home in Spain. I remain grateful for the support of my teammates and coaches, as well as the encouragement I have received from Lady Vol Nation. I will be cheering hard for my teammates from afar as they compete the rest of the season.”Marta Suarez statement released on Twitter
She was named to the 2020-2021 SEC All-Freshman Team and returned to the team this season after missing the entire 2021-2022 season while recovering from an injury.
The 6’3″ guard/forward has averaged 4.9 points and 3.0 rebounds in 14 games this season. Suarez recorded a career-high nine rebounds and added six points against No. 9 Virginia Tech on Dec. 4.
Last month, Tennessee Athletics announced that center Tamari Key would miss the rest of the season after doctors discovered blood clots in her lungs. She is expected to make a full recovery.