Dishin’ the Dirt

By Steve Svetovich

Congratulations to Dunmore senior football player Nico Ruggiero named first-team Lackawanna Football Conference II Coaches’ All-Star for both running back on offense and secondary on defense…Dunmore teammates Max Hunt named first-team kicker and Nick Donvito first-team middle linebacker…How about Texas Rangers signing former New York Mets injury prone ace pitcher Jacob deGrom to five-year, $185-million contract…deGrom is 34 and only pitched in 11 games last season…Mets could be favorite now to land free agent pitcher Justin Verlander who earned his third AL Cy Young Award with 18-4 record and 1.75 ERA for world champion Houston Astros this past season…Verlander, with 244 career wins, is seeking three year deal and will turn 40 next season…New York Yankees offered free agent record setting home run outfielder Aaron Judge eight year, $300-million contract…San Francisco Giants also in running for Judge who may be seeking nine year deal in excess of $300-million…Congratulations to Houston Astros manager Dusty Baker, 73, who won his first World Series title in storied managerial career that includes over 2,000 wins…Baker had close to 2,000 hits as player, winning world championship with LA Dodgers in 1981…Condolences to family of retired Scranton firefighter and dedicated family man Donald Love, formerly of Green Ridge, who served in both Army and Pennsylvania National Guard, for his passing at 85 last month…Condolences to family of Jean Blackledge Sweeney, R.N., Green Ridge, dedicated wife, mother and grandmother and community leader, who died last month at 82…Condolences to family of former State Representative Edward Staback who died last month in Nebraska on hunting trip…Congratulations to Scranton Knights junior cross country runner Brian McCormack named All-Region and Runner of Year…Congratulations to Dunmore sophomore cross country runner Tommy Clark named All-Region…Congratulations to Holy Cross senior soccer player Ron Prislupski named All-Region for third time and Player of Year second time…Prislupski is two-time all-state selection who set school record with 160 career goals, ranking fourth all-time in Pennsylvania…Congratulations to Scranton Prep sophomore tennis player Alyssa Wright named All Region and Player of Year…Do you remember Chael Clark scoring 31 points in Dunmore’s 56-54 win over Western Wayne 20 years ago?…Do you remember Austin Seamon running for two touchdowns in Dunmore’s 35-29 win over Southern Columbia in PIAA Class 1A first round 10 years ago?…Do you remember Dunmore football player Vito Grippo?…Congratulations to Dunmore Bucks soccer team for winning its first District 2 Class 2A title with 5-1 win over four-time defending champion Wyoming Seminary…Two first-half hand balls in penalty and pair of Tommy Clark penalty kicks led Dunmore to district title…Jacque Kakareka started scoring and senior Ron Prislupski added hat trick as Holy Cross earned second straight District 2 Class 1A soccer title…Nico Ruggiero rushed for 105 yards on 17 carries and Lorenzo Mitchell scored on 74-yard run and caught 75-yard TD pass from Tommy Bowen in Dunmore’s 17-14 win over Riverside for District 2 Class 2A title…Congratulations to Holy Cross seniors Drew Smith, John Mease and Maynor Castro-Lemus all named All-Region for soccer…Congratulations to Dunmore sophomore Tommy Clark named All Region for soccer…Condolences to family of legendary MLB Hall of Fame pitcher Gaylord Perry who died last month at 84…Perry, known for using spitball, totaled 314 wins, over 3,500 strikeouts, pitched over 300 innings six times, threw an astounding 303 complete games and was first pitcher to win Cy Young Award in both leagues…In contrast to Perry’s 303 career complete games, Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainright is current active leader in complete games with 28…Perry had 30 in one season…Perry’s former manager Alvin Dark once stated the spitballer would not hit a home run until man landed on the moon…Five years later, Perry hit his first and only MLB homer within 30 minutes after Neil Armstrong landed on moon…Congratulations to Dunmore graduate Chris Nardozzi, son of Laurie Nardozzi and former Dunmore Councilman Paul Nardozzi, who married the former Erica Tempesta, also Dunmore graduate and daughter of Henry Tempesta and Renee Barbini, in spectacular New Orleans wedding…The couple, both Penn State graduates, reside in Santa Monica, California…November 26 marked final appearance of The Sperazza Band who played to packed house at The Villa Maria, West Scranton, owned by Joe Macciocco…The Sperazza Band includes Eric and Jenny Sperazza, Hughestown, Mike Sperazza, Pittston, and Ryan Svetovich, Dunmore…Former Dunmore basketball standout Moriah Murray, four-time all-state guard, committed to play for Penn State for 2023-24 season…Condolences to family of Bishop Hannan graduate Greta Vinskofski who died last month at 52 after courageous three year battle with colon cancer…Do you remember Brian “Fudge” Fidatti?…Whatever became of Ed Podolak?…

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