March 19, 2007
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Tennessee freshman catcher/outfielder Tiffany Huff underwent surgery on her left ankle on Monday, March 19th, to remove loose fragments of cartilage that were lodged in the joint from an injury sustained in high school. The debris in her ankle has been causing pain and inflammation that have inhibited her mobility both on and off the field over the last couple of weeks. She will make a full recovery and is expected to return to the field prior to the conclusion of SEC play.
"Tiffany was attempting to continue playing despite her obvious discomfort, but the coaching, training and medical staffs believed that the course of action involving surgery was in her best interest," Lady Vol co-head coach Ralph Weekly said. "We expect a full recovery and also expect her to be back playing at full strength before the end of the season. Karen (co-head coach Weekly) and I pray for her speedy recovery. The injuries to Huff and India Chiles (.440 average) will provide ample opportunities for the younger players on our team to step up and fill the void. Injuries are a part of softball, especially at this time of the year."
Huff has made quite a splash in her inaugural season donning the Orange & White by registering a .388 average while spending the majority of the season ranked in the top two in the Southeastern Conference in RBI with her team-best total of 32. The Saugus, Calif., native has hit safely in 22 of the 29 contests in which she has participated with two six-game hitting streaks and has blasted a UT-best five home runs with a .600 slugging percentage. Back during Tennessee's marathon 11-game west coast swing in late February, prior to experiencing pain, Huff hit a remarkable .448 (13-of-29) with two doubles, three homers and 20 RBI to help UT continue its unbeaten start. She also tallied a .538 batting average with two home runs and 10 RBI during the Big Orange's title run at the Louisville Slugger Desert Classic over Feb. 16-18. Huff delivered a career-best four RBI in wins over UC-Davis, Loyola Marymount (grand slam HR) and Toledo.
No. 1 Tennessee (28-2, 6-2 SEC) will continue its league schedule on Wednesday with a home doubleheader against South Carolina (24-7, 3-3 SEC) starting at 4:30 p.m. The second contest of the DH will be broadcast live at approximately 6:30 p.m. on The Sports Animal (99.1, 99.3, 990 AM and through Yahoo Sports on utladyvols.com) with the "Voice of the Lady Vols" Mickey Dearstone on the call. Live stats will be available through Gametracker, and periodic updates will be provided to the Lady Vol Hotline at 865-974-8700 (box #6).