Big 4 Men: Canisius to honor '63 team at finale - The Buffalo News

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Big 4 Men: Canisius to honor '63 team at finale

Canisius and Niagara will complete their regular season schedules this afternoon with home game against Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference opponents. Seeding for the MAAC Tournament will be at stake in both games.

Canisius (17-13, 10-9) will face Saint Peter’s (17-12, 13-6) at 2 p.m. in the Koessler Athletic Center while Niagara (9-21, 6-13) will take on Fairfield (15-13, 10-9) at the Gallagher Center.

With a win Canisius can finish either in the No. 4 or No. 5 slot for the MAAC Tournament, which will open on Friday at the Times Union Center in Albany. If the Griffs win they will be No. 4 if Siena loses its home game to Marist or No. 5 if the Saints defeat Marist.

A Canisius loss could land it in the No. 5, 6 or 7 position. It depends on how Fairfield and Rider fare. It’s No. 5 if Fairfield loses at Niagara and Rider loses at home to Quinnipiac, No. 6 if Fairfield wins and Rider loses or the other way around or No. 7 if both Fairfield and Rider win.

The Griffs are coming off a Friday night loss to Fairfield 58-55, on a buzzer-beating three by Tyler Nelson.

The Purple Eagles lost to Saint Peter’s, 66-53, in their last game on Friday. The Peacocks can wrap up second place in the MAAC standings with a win at Canisius or a loss by Iona in its game at Monmouth, which has clinched the MAAC regular season championship.

Canisius will honor seniors Phil Valenti, Kiefer Douse and Martin Dixon-Green. Also, the 1963 National Invitation Tournament men’s basketball team and four individual athletes will be inducted into the Canisius Athletics Hall of Fame in ceremonies.

The 1963 NIT team lost to Providence in the championship game. That team was coached by Canisius Hall of Famer, the late Bob MacKinnon. Four members of the team, Billy O’Connor, Tom Chester, Frank Swiatek and Pat Turtle, are individual members of the Hall. Others on that team who appeared in the championship game are Dick McClory, Tony Gennari, Tim O’Mara, John Kemmer, Joe Bossert, Larry Hartigan, Jack Oberding and John Brennan.

Niagara will be seeded No. 9 if it wins today or if it loses and Marist also loses. The Purple Eagles will be No. 10 if they lose and Marist wins.

Niagara will have only one senior playing his final home game - Maurice Taylor Jr.

The Purple Eagles lost to Saint Peter’s, 66-53, in their last game on Friday. The Peacocks can wrap up second place in the MAAC standings with a win at Canisius or a loss by Iona in its game at Monmouth, which has clinched the MAAC regular season championship.

 

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