Huskies History: Men’s Basketball Celebrates 50 Years Since Historic Win
The varsity men’s Huskies basketball team 1972-73
Front Row (left to right): Otha Johnson, Donald ‘Taps’ Gallagher BA'76, Lee Thomas BA'78, Peter Halpin BA'73, Bob Taboski BSc'78, Coach Brian Heaney AssocAlum'78
Back Row (left to right): John Landry, manager; Brian Burgess BA'76 BEd'78, Art Waters, Mickey Fox BA'76 BEd'77, Fred Perry, Greig Redding Comm'76, John Gallinaugh BComm'74 BEd'76, Captain
Photo: Association of Atlantic Universities
By Peter Halpin BA'73
On March 3, 1973, Saint Mary’s wrote itself into the history books of Canadian university sport. The varsity men’s Huskies basketball team played to a stunning win over the Lakehead University Nor’westers, with a final score of 79-67. The Huskies claimed the title of Canadian Inter-collegiate University Association (CIAU) national basketball champs in Waterloo, ON.
It was the first CIAU national title in Saint Mary’s University history and set the stage for a decade of Huskies basketball hardwood dominance. The team was subsequently inducted into the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame and the Saint Mary’s Hall of Fame in 1996 and 1998 respectively.
March 2023 will mark the 50th anniversary of that historic victory and the team will reunite during this year’s University Sports national championship held from March 10-12, at Halifax’s Scotiabank Centre.
Remarkably, six members of the team as well as Coach Brian Heaney, settled in Halifax following their graduation from Saint Mary’s. Five team members returned to their homes in the United States. On March 10, the first day of the University Sport national championship, Saint Mary’s University will host a gathering of alumni (particularly from the 1969-1975 era) and friends for a meet and greet with ’73 team members.
This coming together of once trailblazing athletes, now proud Saint Mary’s alumni, is a true testament to the lasting-power of Santamarian spirit.
The 73’ Men’s Basketball meet and greet will take place March 10, 2023 from 4-6 p.m., at the Hfx Sports Bar, 1721 Brunswick Street, Halifax. Sign-up to attend here.