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Image 9 of The Advocate Messenger April 16, 2012

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B THE ADVOCATE-MESSENGER | WWW.AMNEWS.COM LARRY VAUGHT, SPORTS EDITOR (859) 936-0353 | FAX (859) 236-9566 SPORTS DEPT. (859) 236-2551 or (800) 428-0409, extension 137 or 246 | To report a score, use extension 305. SPORTS MONDAY APRIL 16, 2012 Joe Hall enjoyed ‘entertaining’ Cats F ormer University of Kentucky coach Joe Hall led the Wildcats to the 1978 national championship and has watched many talented teams play during his time as a player, coach and fan. He thinks John Calipari’s team that just won the national title is as good as any UK team he’s seen play and actually compares the 2012 Wildcat to two legendary UK teams — Rupp’s Runts and the Fabulous Five. “is team was one of the most entertaining teams I have ever witnessed,” said Hall Sunday. “ey were just super and so much fun to watch. ey could handle the ball like Rupp’s Runts. e moved the ball that way. ey ran the fast break like the Fabulous Five. ey were that much more talented than Darius Miller was something. You could just go on and on. Just an unusual, Larry Vaught Sports Editor hard working group. We are larry@amnews.com going to miss these kids more than any past team. opponents just like the Fab ey had such a great deFive. ey were just better. meanor on the floor and Rupp’s Runts were the took coaching so well.” same way. Rupp’s Runts — finished “But this team with the the 1965-66 season with a talent of Anthony Davis and 27-2 record and lost in the hustle of Michael KiddNCAA championship game Gilchrist and clutch play of to Texas Western 72-65. e Fabulous Five won the 1948 national championship with a 36-3 record and all five starters — Ralph Beard, Alex Groza, Wah Wah Jones, Cliff Barker and Kenny Rollins — along with coach Adolph Rupp also won the gold medal at the Summer Olympics that same year. In 1949, UK won the national title again with the same starters except for Rollins. UK backs Sanders, Warren better Hall knows Calipari’s faces different challenges now than he did after he won his title or Rupp won any of his championships. “Winning a championship takes a little drive away from you for a while, but you get it right back when you get on the floor with your players,” Hall said. “e situation with See VIEWS, on B8 Danville senior Dowell Harmon, right, has learned to play both third base and shortstop this year after primiarly playing first base for the Admirals last season. “Every year, we’ve told him we need him at a different position,” Danville coach Paul Morse said. Clay Jackson/ cjackson@amnews.com By LARRY VAUGHT larry@amnews.com LEXINGTON — Kentucky running backs coach Steve Pardue saw how injuries could impact his position last season during his first year in the Southeastern Conference and says developing depth at tailback is his top priority during spring practice before Saturday’s Blue-White Game. Pardue shared these insights on Kentucky’s running backs going into the final week of practice: A Q‘n Question: How do you feel the running backs have done this spring? Pardue: “ey are working really hard and I have been happy with their work ethic and attitude every day. We have a lot of areas to improve in like everybody else. CoShik Williams has been banged up a little bit (shoulder), but he has still got some reps in practice. Raymond Sanders has looked the best since I have been here. He is healthy. Last year he had a lot of issues going on health-wise. You can tell he feels better physically and because of that he’s playing better. What a difference a year makes for D.J. Warren as a fullback. He came here really as a high school tailback learning to play fullback during the season last year, so his confidence is so much better right now. Understanding what to do, he can really play a lot faster and I am really happy with his progress. Cody Jones, the backup walk-on fullback, continues to get better and better. So I feel good about those two guys. Tailback Jon George has had a good spring doing things for us. Derek Bishop and Chad Merida, two walkon tailbacks, are doing a good job knowing their assignments and knowing what to do. It has been a good group to work with. Just have to get better.” Question: Will Warren’s role change or expand based on what he did last year and experience he gained? Pardue: “I don’t really know. at is yet to be determined a little bit, game planning. ere will be games where he didn’t get many snaps, then all of a sudden against Tennessee he gets about every offensive snap. at is going to be a role ... and good thing about him is that he is a great kid and team guy. I am Versatility Ads’ Harmon switches positions, hitting style By MIKE MARSEE marsee@amnews.com Dowell Harmon just keeps reinventing himself. Just when he seems to be getting comfortable at one position, he is moved to another. And just when he seems to be establishing himself as a particular kind of hitter, he becomes something else. rough it all, the Danville senior has learned to roll with the changes. “I’m willing to play anywhere,” Harmon said. “It’s fun just learning to play new positions.” It became clear a couple of years ago that Harmon had to play somewhere. He had much to offer the Admirals on offense, and he developed into one of their top run-producers last season. He’s still a valuable part of that offense this season, but he isn’t the same hitter. His Clay Jackson/cjackson@amnews.com Dowell Harmon is not hitting for as much power this season, but he’s leading the Admirals in batting average going into Tuesday’s game with Boyle County. home runs are RBIs are well way, way up. In fact, he is off the pace he set last year, Danville’s leading hitter but his batting average is through the first five weeks of the season. “Even his outs are hard outs,” Danville coach Paul Morse said. “He has always hit the ball for us ... and the big thing this year is he’s not chasing as many bad pitches. He’s much more disciplined at the plate. He’s not getting himself out.” He is, however, getting opponents out from two different positions this season. After playing primarily at first base last season, he has taken up residence on the left side of the infield this spring. Harmon is spending much of his time at third base, but he moves to shortstop when Danville’s top pitcher, Rob Caudill, leaves that position to take the mound. He played right field and first base as a sophomore, and he has also seen time at catcher and could still be called on as a backup to An- drew Lasure behind the plate. He said he hadn’t played first base since his Little League days when he moved there last year, and shortstop is new to him this season. “Every year, we’ve told him we need him at a different position,” Morse said. Harmon said his preference would be to play first base or shortstop, depending on who’s pitching, but he said he’s happy to play anywhere, and he believes his versatility will be an asset at the collegiate level. “With me being able to catch, that adds to it,” he said. Wherever he is, Harmon is hitting. After hitting over .400 last year, he is batting a team-high .500 this season for 10th-ranked Danville, which takes an 13-2 record into its 45th District game See HARMON, on B8 Estes understands the ‘key’ to getting better By HAL MORRIS hmorris@amnews.com Taylor Estes expects big things out of herself. e Danville catcher, an honorable mention all-state pick last season, has been preparing for a successful junior season, and so far likes the results. “I’ve been pleased with how I’ve been hitting. I’ve been working with different people, so my hitting has Hal Morris/hmorris@amnews.com Danville catcher Taylor Estes says an overseas trip helped improve gotten a lot better since last her overall play and she’s pleased with the way her season with the Ad- year,” she said. “And catchSee UK, on B8 ing-wise, it’s great. I love mirals has been going, too. The Advocate-Messenger | www.amnews.com catching.” It’s also been quite a whirlwind for her the past few months. In January, Estes was part of a team of Americans that played in the World Cup of Softball in the Netherlands. at experience, she said, was terrific as both a learning experience and simply a great tourist opportunity. “at was so cool. We played mostly in Rotterdam. ere were about 12 teams. ere were teams from Germany and all around that area and other places, and we got to play all those foreign girls and it was so cool to see how they all played,” she said. “One catcher didn’t even use shin guards. ere were a lot of short game players. ey loved slapping the ball, they loved stealing. It was so cool. And the touring part was cool, too.” e team played about 10 games in the seven days it was in Europe, and Estes said she learned a lot playing with and against some See ESTES, on B8

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