Dishin’ the Dirt

By Steve Svetovich

Congratulations to Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow for leading team to its first Super Bowl since 1989 in only his second NFL season…And how about Bengals rookie kicker Evan McPherson who keeps winning playoff games for Concinnati and has record 40 playoff points on 16-for-16 field goal and 4-for-4 extra point post season kicks leading into Super Bowl…And congratulations to Matthew Stafford who led LA Rams to Super Bowl in his first season as quarterback there after 11 years with Detroit Lions…Stafford is only five yards short of 50,000 regular season passing yards…So is Tom Brady really retiring at 44 after one of his best seasons?…Past six NFL playoff games were perhaps best football games fans have ever seen in two week period…Congratulations to Boston Red Sox legend David Ortiz for election to National Baseball Hall of Fame…But what about Jeff Kent, Todd Helton, Jimmy Rollins and Gary Sheffield?…Phillies great Ryan Howard, with 382 career homers, off the ballot  after not getting needed five percent of vote to stay on…Alleged steroid users Barry Bonds, Roger Clemons and Sammy Sosa and controversial pitcher Curt Schilling off writers’ ballot after not garnering necessary 75 percent of vote for election…Now the Veteran’s Committee will decide their fate in future…Congratulations to Holy Cross Lady Crusaders basketball standout Kaci Kranson who scored 1,500th career point and set school’s all time scoring mark breaking record of University of Scranton standout Abby Anderson…Kaci last month scored career best 44 points against Lackawanna Trail…Dunmore’s Adriel DeNaples one of Lackawanna League Division III leading scorers at 14.3 points per game and league’s free throw percentage leader…Holy Cross senior forward-guard Gabe Gonzales one of league’s leading scorers at 13.7 points per contest…Dunmore standout Kevin Walsh averaging 11 points and eight rebounds per game…Entire Holy Cross Crussders basketball team shaved heads to support veteran coach Al Callejas who is fighting battle with lung cancer…Congratulations to former Holy Cross standout Patrick Bennie named MAC Freedom Conference men’s basketball Player of Week for his performance at King’s College…For second time this season, Immaculata University freshman Abbey Lentowski, former Holy Cross basketball standout, named Atlantic East Conference Defensive Player of Week last month…Condolences to family of former New York Jets Hall of Fame receiver Don Maynard who died at 86…When Maynard retired in 1973, he was NFL’s career receiving leader with 633 receptions for 11,834 yards and 88 touchdowns…He was part of historic Super Bowl III champion New York Jets…Dunmore’s Vic Fangio fired from Denver Broncos coaching job after 7-10 season, but hoping for another NFL coaching opportunity…Do you remember Casey Gaughan’s layup at buzzer to give Holy Cross 54-52 win over Dunmore 10 years ago?…It was 20 years ago when Dunmore defeated Sacred Heart, 63-25, to give basketball coach Ross Macciocco his 400th win…Condolences to family of Holy Cross senior guard Meghan McDonnell whose beloved dad Rob passed away last month…Holy Cross graduate Abby Anderson having outstanding season for University of Scranton Lady Royals with several double-doubles on basketball court…Paul Stefani named new West Scranton High school football coach…How about the Scranton Knights basketball team…Ciera Toomey continues to excel on basketball court for Dunmore Lady Bucks…Do you remember Johnny Nasser?…Scranton Prep junior star running back London Montgomery, Offensive Player of Year, grabbing attention of numerous college recruiters, including Penn State…Mid Valley product and former Times-Tribune All-Region softball player Mari Valonis recently inducted into Middle Atlantic Conference Hall of Fame…Remember Rob Heyen rushing for 120 yards and two touchdowns in Holy Cross 37-14 win over Meyers 10 years ago?…Former University of Scranton tennis star Paul Wysocki, member of school’s Wall of Fame, celebrated 60th birthday with his family in Georgia last month…Happy retirement to Pittsburgh Steelers 18-year quarterback Big Ben Roethisberger who should be in Canton’s Pro Football Hall of Fame in five years…Will there be spring training for baseball in two weeks?…Right now it looks doubtful…Do you remember Kirk Kandel?…Whatever became of Chone Figgins?…

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