A knee injury has sidelined Tani Oluwaseyi for is senior season at St. John’s. (Photo courtesy of St. John’s)

QUEENS, N.Y. – Without playing a game, the St. John’s University men’s team suffering a devastating setback.

Tani Oluwaseyi, the 2019 Big East offensive player of the year and two-time First Team All-Big East selection, will miss the fall campaign after undergoing successful surgery to stabilize the patella in his left knee, the Red Storm announced Wednesday.

“While it’s tough dealing with the fact that I’ll miss my senior season as well as rehabbing my left knee for the next few months, I strongly believe that God has a plan and a purpose for my life and all things happen for a reason,” Oluwaseyi said in a statement. “The goal is to come back a better player than I was before, and I’m going to do what I can to achieve that. I’m looking forward to supporting my teammates every step of the way, and I hope we can do something really special this year.”

During the abbreviated 2021 spring season, Oluwaseyi scored five goals and dished out three assists in just nine games for the Red Storm en route to a spot on the All-Big East first team. Four of Oluwaseyi’s five goals were game wi-nners. The Red Storm went 4-0-0 in games that featured a goal from the Mississauga, Ont., product. Prior to the season, Oluwaseyi was named to the watch list for the MAC Hermann Trophy, awarded annually to the top player in all of college soccer.

“We’re obviously heartbroken for Tani that he’s going to miss his senior year,” head coach Dr. Dave Masur said in a statement. “I know that Tani was gearing up for a big season, but knowing the kind of kid that he is I have no doubt that he’ll still have a huge impact on his teammates from the sideline. I’m confident that Tani will return to the field better than ever when he’s healthy.”

As a sophomore in 2019, Oluwaseyi became the first Johnnie since 1996 to win BIG EAST Offensive Player of the Year honors after posting 11 goals and five assists for the Red Storm, which reached the NCAA Round of 16 for the first time since 2008. Oluwaseyi’s 11 goals were the most by a St. John’s player since 2003, as the Red Storm turned in a final record of 14-5-1. All five of the team’s losses came against squads that reached at least the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

Oluwaseyi was named to the Big East All-Freshman Team in 2018 after tallying four goals and two assists in 18 appearances, five of which were starts.

He also has been named to a United Soccer Coaches All-Region Team twice.