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Originally published Tuesday, February 20, 2007 at 12:00 AM

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UW center Wolfinger to have surgery

Washington freshman center Joe Wolfinger hoped rest would heal a stress fracture of his right foot that has sidelined him all season. But Wolfinger decided in...

Seattle Times staff reporter

Washington freshman center Joe Wolfinger hoped rest would heal a stress fracture of his right foot that has sidelined him all season.

But Wolfinger decided in recent days to have surgery, and will likely undergo it in the next few weeks, UW coach Lorenzo Romar said Monday.

Romar said the decision to have surgery isn't necessarily a setback, just a different approach to trying to solve the problem for a player the Huskies are counting on heavily for the future.

"He tried one way so now he's going to try another," Romar said of Wolfinger, a 7-foot center from Portland.

Romar said Wolfinger should be recovered in time for the team's trip next August to Greece, where it will spent about 10 days playing games against local teams.

College teams are allowed to make such foreign trips once every four years, and UW has not gone on one since 1997, when it went to France.

All players on the current roster are eligible to play in such trips, but not incoming freshmen. Romar said UW turned down a chance to take a trip last summer because the freshmen couldn't have played.

Wolfinger, up to about 280 pounds, could use the trip to get back in playing shape. Wolfinger had not played in an official game since signing with UW. He redshirted last season.

Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or bcondotta@seattletimes.com. Read his blogs on Washington football and basketball at www.seattletimes.com/huskies.

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