Monday, March 15, 2004

Junior Hayes makes a complete recovery


UK notebook

By Neil Schmidt
The Cincinnati Enquirer

ATLANTA - How Chuck Hayes followed up his two-point effort Saturday is what will give opposing coaches nightmares.

[img]
Kentuckyıs Erik Daniels dunks against Florida during the Southeastern Conference Tournament championship game.
(AP photo)
The Kentucky junior forward on Sunday nearly recorded just the second triple-double in school history, totaling career highs of 23 points and eight assists and adding eight rebounds in the victory over Florida.

He and senior center Erik Daniels have had a friendly wager about which would record one first. "I'm going to get one," Hayes said. Replied Daniels: "I've still got six more games to get it."

It's probably not beyond either's reach. Both were within four assists of a triple-double a week prior, also against Florida.

"It's a difficult thing to get," UK assistant coach David Hobbs said. "To get this close, it shows you're being unselfish, you're being tough, and you're using your skills."

Said coach Tubby Smith of Hayes: "You don't find a guy as versatile as he is."

Chris Mills recorded UK's only triple-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists against Austin Peay on Dec. 27, 1988.

Hayes, who left the game for good with 4:49 remaining, said he wasn't aware he was close to making history.

ALL-TOURNEY TEAM: UK had three-fifths of the all-tourney team, with MVP Gerald Fitch joined by Hayes and Kelenna Azubuike. The other selections were Florida's Anthony Roberson and South Carolina's Mike Boynton.

TOUGH THOMAS: One of the key developments recently is Sheray Thomas' emergence as the top post reserve. He averaged 14 minutes in three games this weekend, after having averaged 5.5 minutes and playing in just 18 of 27 games during the regular season.

"Sheray has been a big factor for us," Hobbs said. "He's an interior guy who can still get out on the perimeter and guard you."

SEC IN NCAAS: The SEC got six NCAA Tournament bids, matching its record high. Joining UK are Mississippi State, Florida, Vanderbilt, South Carolina and Alabama. The Atlantic Coast Conference, Big East and Conference USA also got six bids each.

CAT TALES: Kentucky's 49 first-half points were the most this season against an SEC opponent. ... UK is 16-2 all time in the Georgia Dome.

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E-mail nschmidt@enquirer.com




NCAA TOURNAMENT
Seeds: UK 1, UC 4, XU 7
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Seeds are planted, now for the games
Bracket breakdown
Women: UConn passed over for a top spot
Utah State and Colorado head NIT field
Cheer the Turtle: Terrapins win ACC
Remember Baylor?
Tournament Top 5's

LOCAL TOURNAMENT HEADLINES
UC heads north, but not far
Familiar faces square off in Bearcats' 1st-round game
XU gets Louisville in opener
Cardinals seek quick return to pre-injury form
Kentucky hits jackpot with top overall seed
Mountain Hawks, Rattlers no strangers to big-game pressure
SEC tourney goes routinely for Wildcats
Junior Hayes makes a complete recovery
Women's NIT: Miami, Xavier and UC in
Exclusion disappoints Louisville

REDS / BASEBALL
So far, so good for Reds
Inside Reds camp
Vander Wal to rehab with club
Royals getting adjusted to new role as favorite
Dodgers suffer a loss

BENGALS / NFL
Defense remains work in progress
Owens decision expected by Tuesday

PREP SPORTS
MND faces Final 4 for the ages
Prep sports schedules

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THIS WEEK'S SPORTS POLL
Which Xavier win was bigger: UC when the Bearcats were ranked No. 1 or No. 1 St. Joseph's?