Sunday, February 10, 2002

UC notebook


McElroy steps up, scores big

By Michael Perry
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Wednesday night at Charlotte, Leonard Stokes gave UC a little something extra with his 30-point effort.

        Saturday at Wake Forest, it was Immanuel McElroy's turn.

        The senior guard, who has become one of the best defenders in Conference USA, turned offensive-minded and scored a career-high 19 points in the Bearcats' 103-94 victory over the 19th-ranked Demon Deacons.

        “We've been waiting for him to do that,” UC coach Bob Huggins said. “He shoots it well in practice. He's just so unselfish that he doesn't shoot it as much in the games.”

        McElroy, who came in averaging 8.6 points, finished 7-of-10 from the field. He scored 11 of UC's first 19 points and had 13 in the first half.

        “I knew I had to come out and help (Steve) Logan and Stokes and be more aggressive so the other team won't focus on both of them,” McElroy said. “After the first shot, I felt good, so I kept attacking. I normally pass the ball around a little bit. If I take shots early in the game, I think it will carry over.”

        Huggins said McElroy expends much of his energy on defense and also is asked to bring the ball upcourt when UC wants Logan to play shooting guard. That takes away from McElroy's offense.

        The last time McElroy had scored in double figures was Dec.29 against Akron; and he has scored 10 or more just eight times all season.

        “Different nights people step up on this ballclub,” Logan said. “Everybody works hard. Everybody's capable of making points.”

        FACES IN THE CROWD:

        UC recruit Eric Hicks, from nearby Greensboro, attended Saturday's game. Huggins attended Hicks' game Friday when the 6-foot-6 forward from Dudley High School had 29 points, 13 rebounds and 10 blocks in a 77-70 victory over Winston-Salem Parkland.

        COMING SOON:

        Sports Illustrated reporter Seth Davis was at the game and plans to write about UC for this week's “Inside College Basketball” column.

        GOOD ANSWER:

        Huggins, who faced Skip Prosser seven times when Prosser was Xavier's coach, was asked how it was playing him in a different environment. “It's a lot more civil,” Huggins said.

       



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