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Names In The Game

July 20, 1992

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) _ Tausha Smith refuses to believe the loss of her right hand will end her basketball career.

″I’m going to learn with this,″ said Smith, a point guard on the Louisburg Junior College team that won a national championship last year.

Last season as a freshman, Smith snapped passes to teammates and directed floor traffic. When the season ended, she slid a championship ring on the third finger of her right hand to remind her of determination and dreams realized.

Last week, Smith, five months pregnant, was en route to the hospital for an ultrasound.

Large chunks of metal which fell from a truck in front of her, caused the car she was in to flip five times. As the car rolled to a stop, she was flung halfway out the window, with her right arm pinned between the car and the road.

With some fingers severed and nerves pinched to nothingness, doctors were forced to amputate from mid-forearm.

A second operation was performed Sunday. Doctors are monitoring the condition of the baby, whose heart is beating normally.

Smith is showing a resiliency never expected by her family.

″She’s stronger than I thought she was,″ said her mother, Nannie Dunston. ″She’s taught me to be strong.″

An area coach attested to that strength.

″Tausha is a super person, a hard-working girl,″ said Larry Lindsey, coach of the men’s basketball team at Wake Forest-Rolesville High School.

Smith was the star of the women’s team at the school, scoring 20 points a game as a senior.

″She was so good she could play any position she wanted to,″ Lindsey said. ″As a coach, you dream about players coming along like that.″


HOBART, Australia (AP) - An Australian Rules football player, banned from a local amateur league last week after testing HIV positive, was arrested Monday on drug charges.

Steve Roach, 32, was taken into custody outside a Melbourne television station after an appearance there, on a warrant charging that he had failed to appear in a court last year on a heroin trafficking charge.

He appeared afterwards at Magistrate’s Court and was remanded in custody until July 29.

The North-East Football Union, which runs the six-team league on Tasmania, last week banned Roach from playing because of his illness.

It also decided to bar players with hepatitis B or C.

Roach visited Melbourne voluntarily Monday, knowing he risked arrest.

″I feel that the issue here is greater than that,″ he said in an interview on the Ray Martin Show prior to his arrest.

″I should run the gauntlet and try and talk to people and try and find out what the public thinks about what’s happening.″

Roach said he had become HIV-infected during while serving a two-year jail sentence for armed robbery. He did not detail how he got the virus, which can leads to AIDS.


FRIDLEY, Minn. (AP) - Cyclist Bart Bell was released from a Twin Cities hospital Monday, three weeks after suffering a severe head injury during Olympic trials.

Bell, 24, of Anniston, Ala., left Health One Unity Hospital for an air ambulance flight to Birmingham, Ala., where he will continue recovery at Lakeshore Rehabilitation Hospital.

He was injured June 28 during a tandem bicycle race at the National Sports Center and was in a coma for two weeks. Since regaining consciousness, he steadily improved with daily physical and occupational therapy, and is beginning to respond more, said Dr. Paul Seel of Health One hospital.

A hospital spokeswoman said Bell still is considered in fair condition. During the past week, he began walking with assistance and eating soft foods, the hospital said.

As he left the hospital, staff members gave Bell and his family hospital T- shirts, sport bags and a card signed by more than 25 staff members and volunteers.

A sign made and carried by Bell’s mother, Charlotte Cobb, read, ″Don’t Quit Bart.″

″Bart has the heart of a champion, a lot of heart and soul,″ his mother said.

Bell’s family said they’d received more than 1,400 calls and a 5-inch-thick stack of mail from well-wishers.


JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) - Sports officials continued wrangling Monday over whether javelin thrower Tom Petranoff would represent South Africa at the Barcelona Olympics.

The American-born Petranoff has taken South African citizenship and was considered a certain pick for the track and field squad.

But at ceremonies Monday night for the departing South African squad at Jan Smuts International Airport, officials said Petranoff’s status remained unclear.

Petranoff is in Helsinki, Finland, for a final warmup meet before the Olympics begin Saturday.

Sam Ramsamy, head of South Africa’s Olympic committee, said the nation’s track and field officials were divided on whether Petranoff should represent the country.

Deon van Zyl, the president of the national track body, said he sent Ramsamy a letter confirming Petranoff had been chosen for the squad.

But Ramsamy said black members of the group sent a separate letter opposing Petranoff’s selection.

They reportedly object to Petranoff’s participation because he took part in a ″rebel″ tour of South Africa in 1989 in defiance of an international sports moratorium to protest apartheid.

Petranoff is the former world record holder in the javelin but was considered an outside shot to finish among the leaders at Barcelona.

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