Tuesday , August 9 2022

Dee Rowe, Abromaitis mourn the loss of former UConn star Tony Hanson


"Very low for Tony," they would call it.

It was a game designed to get Tony Hanson the ball, initially against the 1-3-1 zone but, really, against almost any type of UConn defense tackles.

Usually, if the Chassidim were able to get the ball Hanson, it was delivered.

"I do not care if there were 89 people there," said former UConn coach Dee Rowe, "he's going to score."

Hanson, a three-time New England player who is still in third place on the all-time scoring list, died on Sunday morning. He was 63 years old.

Hanson is remembered by Roe and his former teammate, Avromitis, as an excellent player – and an even better person.

"There was not a better score in college basketball," said Abramiitis, who was a teammate of Hanson in Holly Cross Highbury and two seasons in Oakon. "It did not matter who he was going against, he was fearless, he usually won all the fights, no matter who he resisted, I do not care who you were, you could not duplicate some of the things he could do.

Rowe, who trained Hanson in all his four years at UConn, during which Huskies went 73-38, said Hanson "was like a son in so many ways."

"His loss is very tragic," Rowe continued. "I was so shocked and hurt and very sad, we were close friends, he was an amazing leader and an amazing friend, he was inspired every day, the great passion that never went away, he loved the game and never acted like he was bigger than the game. With him, being with his whole life, he was a treasure for me.

Abromaitis played with Hanson for two years in Holly Crash under coach Tim MacDonald, and then had to drive up to Storrs to watch the Hanson star for the first two seasons of his Eskis. Hanson encouraged Avremayitis to join him in Oakon, and the two were partners in Abramheim's first-year room.

"I can not name the enemy he ever had," said Avromayitis, who was ranked 45th in UConn's all-time scoring. "He certainly had challenges in life, where he grew up, but he overcame all of this."

Hanson finished with 1,990 career points like Husky, 31 more than Shabazz Napier. Only Chris Smith and Richard Hamilton scored more.

After graduating from Okon University in 1977, he was drafted in the third round by New Jersey in New Jersey, but never played in the NBA. Hanson went on to a successful career training in England, where he was once known by Queen Elizabeth for his community service and his work with youth. Hansson left Waterbury in recent years and lived in Wyndham at the time of his death.

"I always try to reach out and touch someone's hand, make the world better if you can," said Rhew. "It was always Tony's way, I loved him as if you loved a son, he was a treasure to all of us.



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