Hicks & Team USA Win Gold

A member of the Bearcats basketball family has helped Team USA win the top prize during the World University Games.

University of Cincinnati forward Eric Hicks, part of 12 players representing the United States in the 2005 World University Games during the past ten days has helped Team USA bring home gold.

The Bearcats senior didn't score during the championship game, but did pull down 5 rebounds in the 85-70 victory over Ukraine.

To earn a trip to the Gold Medal game, Team USA entered these games underdogs after not sending a team to the 2003 games. But while many didn't feel Team USA brought the countries best, players and coaches worked hard and proved critics wrong.

Team USA started play by defeating Iran 94-47. The following day saw them defeat Slovakia 85-70 and Germany 72-62. Hicks would not play against Germany but did provide some rebounding power during the previous two games.

But while Hicks wasn't much of a factor in the first three games, his role in the team's victory against China showed why Bearcats fans are happy the senior will be returning for his senior campaign. Hicks would score 24 points and pull down 7 total rebounds in the contest against the last team to defeat the United States in these games.

But the China game would be Hicks high point as Team USA defeated the Czech Republic in its next game while Hicks would score only 8 points.

In the Medal Quarterfinals Team USA defeated Australia 88-68 with Hicks scoring 4 points and the Semifinals saw America destroy Russia 120-80 as Hicks scored 7 points.

In the Gold Medal game Hicks would go scoreless as 6 players scored in double figures during the 85-70 victory over Ukraine but the biggest goal was reached as gold was won.

The games brought 30 teams together and saw Team USA continue World University Games dominance. The United States has earned medals in all 18 games they have participated. The team coached by Villanova University head coach Jay Wright returned the USA to its rightful place after the team came up short in 2001 with a loss to China 83-82.

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