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This Day in Buffalo Sports History: Niagara goes 6 OTs

   Feb. 21, 1953 -- This was a college basketball game that was like a certain battery advertisement's slogan. It kept going and going and going.

    Niagara and Siena needed six overtimes before the Purple Eagles finally pulled out a victory, 88-81. It's the longest game in college basketball history. The game was played at the Washington Avenue Armory in Albany.

   Future NBA standout Larry Costello played that game for Niagara. He didn't play the entire game -- merely 69 minutes and 40 seconds of it. In other words, he was on the bench for 20 seconds. After that game, Niagara changed his jersey number from 24 to 69. Ed Fleming played in all 70 minutes; sure enough, he took uniform number 70 for his final two seasons. Future NBA coach Hubie Brown was on the Niagara roster as well that night.

--- Budd Bailey

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