Niagara Gazette

Sports

December 12, 2012

Defense keys Mihalich's 250th victory at Niagara

Niagara Gazette — John Gallagher met Joe Mihalich 25 years ago, when he was a 10-year-old ball boy along for the ride with the LaSalle men's basketball team on a trip to Notre Dame.

He's been a fan ever since.

"Amazing guy," the Hartford coach said Wednesday night in the basement of the Gallagher Center. "Always been the same. An energy-giver, not an energy-taker.

Earlier in the evening, Gallagher had the bittersweet experience of watching his friend earn his 250th coaching victory at his own expense.

Pressure defense fueled Niagara's 75-59 win over Hartford and pushed Mihalich past his latest milestone.

Antoine Mason, who wrote "250" on the board in the locker room before the game, had 19 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals to lead the Purple Eagles (4-6) in their first home game since Nov. 18.

"We knew about it, we kept talking about it," Mason said. "We had to get it for him. He's a great coach."

Trailing 11-7 eight minutes into the game, Niagara used an aggressive, three-quarter court trap to storm back and build a big lead, forcing 10 turnovers that all lead to baskets while finishing the half on a 30-9 run.

"We took it personal this game and wanted to show that we can play defense," Mason said.

"That was our main goal, to run them off the line because they are a great 3-point shooting team, rebound and get out and run," said Ameen Tanksley, who filled the stat sheet with 16 points, 12 rebounds and three assists.

Hartford (5-5) came in shooting 37 percent from 3-point range and taking 41 percent of its field goals from beyond the arc. Struggling to get the ball across halfcourt on several possessions, the Hawks managed to shoot just 7 of 24 from long range against Niagara.

"Joe does a great job with his zone," Gallagher said. "We didn't do a good job, conceptually, attacking the zone."

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Sports
Featured Ads
House Ads
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
Opinion
House Ads
Night & Day
Twitter News
Follow us on twitter
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Front page