Newark, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - Sterling Gibbs scored 23 points off the bench as the Seton Hall Pirates took down the Niagara Purple Eagles, 83-72, in a non-league tilt at the Prudential Center.
Gibbs nailed 17-of-23 shots from the free throw line for Seton Hall (1-0). Brandon Mobley added 14 points and Patrik Auda chipped in 11 points and a team-high eight rebounds.
Antoine Mason scored a game-high 34 points for Niagara (0-1), which was playing its first game under new head coach Joe Mihalich. Marcus Ware tallied 10 points and Ramone Snowden pulled down 15 rebounds.
The Pirates shot at a 50 percent clip in the first half and held the Purple Eagles to just 27.6 percent shooting. Seton Hall used the edge in field goal percentage to take a 39-34 lead into the break.
In the final 20 minutes the Pirates had eight more field goal attempts than the Purple Eagles, which proved to be the difference as Seton Hall overcame the 50-percent shooting effort from Niagara in the second half to claim the victory.
The two teams combined for 102 free throw attempts on 73 fouls. Niagara won the rebounding battle by a 41-36 margin.