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Kay Yow Taking Leave Of Absence For Breast Cancer Treatment

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RALEIGH, N.C. — North Carolina State women's basketball coach

Kay Yow

has had a recurrence of breast cancer that was originally diagnosed in 1987.

The school issued a statement Monday saying the limited recurrence has been removed surgically. It will be treated with radiation and daily oral hormonal therapies to minimize any possibility of the cancer returning.

Yow and her N.C. State team kept her new cancer battle private for several weeks. Her staff said she was re-diagnosed in late November. She privately told her team and kept coaching after surgery. Now, she is taking an eight-day leave of absence to pursue additional treatment.

"It was very emotional when we found out, but with Coach Yow, we always keep a positive outlook on everything," Wolfpack guard Kendra Bell said.

"It's really hard, you know, for the people around her to be down when she's not down," associate coach Stephanie Glance said.

Rex Hospital Radiologist Dr. Julie Taber said most breast cancer recurrence happens in less than five years. Still, she said Yow's prognosis sounds good.

"If it's localized and just in one part of the body, then it's not really any different than if it happened five years after the initial tumor," she said.

The 62-year-old coach will miss her team's next two games, a Friday night home contest against North Carolina and a road game against Virginia Tech the following Monday.

"I think it will be more motivation for us," Bell said.

N.C. State will not specify exactly what kind of nutritional modification program Yow is undergoing. University officials do say she will be back to coach the team for the Miami game next week.

Yow won her 600th game at N.C. State last month. Her career coaching record of 665 victories includes 608 wins with the Wolfpack. She led the 1988 U.S. Olympic women's basketball team to a gold medal in Seoul, South Korea.

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