Photos by Niagara University Athletics
By: Mike Taber and Franklin Heinzmann
NU has played very well as of late, winning four out of their last seven games.
On Friday Jan. 31, senior James Towns scored his one-thousandth point of his career in a loss against Marist. Fans at the Gallagher Center cheered him on as his teammates and coaches gave him a standing ovation on the NU bench during the 67-48 loss.
After the game, head coach Greg Paulus commented on how the team put the looked to put the loss behind them.
“We’ve got a quick turnaround with Quinnipiac coming here,” Paulus said. “We’ll watch a little bit of film tomorrow, we’ll get on the court and put together a game plan for them. We’re looking forward to getting back on the court tomorrow.”
NU rebounded very well upsetting Quinnipiac by winning 75-59. They set a program-record by only committing three turnovers and forcing a whopping 20 turnovers. Purple Eagles guard Marcus Hammond had a team-high 23 points, six rebounds, four assists, and three steals.
The players are working hard and putting together a great season this year despite a slow start NU has silence their critics and pulled off some big efforts. With the Metro-Atlantic tournament coming NU looks like a surprise team. They remain in the hunt of things in a very competitive Metro- Atlantic Conference with a 7-14 (5-5) record.
The last Purple Eagles victory came in the latest edition of Battle of the Bridge. Jai Moore had thirty points, and put forth a great defensive effort as well, to lead NU to an 81-62 victory over Canisius. Great contributions were made by Dagny Davissothir and Adia Brisker help to seal the victory. They combined for 27 points and 15 rebounds in the contest. Canisius was up 33-28 at halftime, but that was the last time they led. The Purple Eagles went on a 9-0 run to start the third quarter and never looked back.
After the game, Moore commented on the quick second half start, and how getting out of the blocks very fast is an advantage overall.
“It’s always very important for us to start fast and get out and get stops right away,” Moore said. “We pride ourselves on defense and on the other end scoring in transition very fast and at a high rate. That’s always something that’s very important to us…that’s when we play our best basketball.”
Unfortunately, they followed the win over their rivals with two losses on a road trip through Siena and Marist, losing 59-54 and 82-57 respectively. They have a chance to make up for those tow losses with their next two games being at the Gallagher Center against Fairfield and Iona on Feb. 6 at 7 P.M, and Feb. 8 at 1 P.M. respectively.
This year the Purple Eagles continue to develop, as they present a team effort like no other. By working hard, they shut down offenses and then capitalize with scoring efforts. They are sitting in the middle of the MAAC at 7-13 (5-6).
Statistics as of Feb. 3, 2020