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Johnson to play Sunday with protective gear

3/26/2003

BATON ROUGE, La. -- LSU point guard Temeka Johnson has two
broken bones in her face after being elbowed in a victory over
Wisconsin-Green Bay, but she is expected to wear protective goggles
and play in the round of 16 this weekend.

Johnson underwent two CAT scans and saw a facial specialist
Tuesday, one day after she was injured in the Lady Tigers' 80-69
win in the West Regional.

The doctor found a break in the bone around her right eye and a
small break in her nose, LSU athletic trainer Micky Sandy said.

Johnson, the most valuable player of the Southeastern Conference
tournament earlier this month, was accidentally elbowed midway
through Monday night's game.

She crumpled to the floor, crying in pain, and stayed down for
several moments. Johnson then headed to the locker room with the
help of a trainer. She returned to the game briefly but quickly
went back to the bench, where she kept ice pressed to her head.

The top-seeded Lady Tigers (29-3) next play Sunday against
Louisiana Tech. The regional semifinals and championship are in
Stanford, Calif.

Coach Sue Gunter said Johnson could resume practice by Friday,
with protective goggles.

"We're very optimistic about her being able to play in our next
game,'' Gunter said. "She really took a shot to the face. We're
going to listen to what the doctors are saying and right now we'll
just take it day by day.''

Johnson has started all 32 games this year, averaging 10.1
points, 5.7 assists and 3.4 rebounds.