Valerie Riggi was honored during the Keystone UNICO holiday party for her tremendous dedication to Keystone UNICO with a citation and a $500 check, which will be donated in her name to the Saint Joseph’s Center.
Shown from left: Honoree Valerie Riggi, Sister Maryalice Jacquinot, I.H.M., President and CEO of Saint Joseph’s Center, and Frank Coviello, Keystone Chapter UNICO president.
The Dunmore 11 U baseball team won the District 17 title and was runner up for Sectionals this summer with Derek Forgione, Tom Clark and John Cortazar as coaches.
In celebration of this achievement, an official banner with a photo of all team members will be hung up at the Dunmore Little League concession stand.
The team did a great job this season, winning 9 out of a total 11 games. We have some talented boys on the team and I know we will go far next year as well! The overall team batting average was .412, and the overall team on base percentage was .529.
The full team roster included Tommy Clark, Kyle Cortazar, Cory Domiano, Max Forgione, Bobby Hoban, Matthew Iezzi, Jaedyn Kura, Jack McNeff, Connor Mullaney, Keegan Oprisko, and Joseph Roughgarden.
According to head coach Forgione, “The boys learned to believe fully in themselves and their teammates. Not one of their regular season teams had a winning record, so they had to learn to believe in themselves and gain a new level of confidence. They figured out the right mindset needed to compete at a higher level.”
Among the many lessons the young players learned, according to their coach, were to never give up.
“They were down early 9-0 against Abington American in our second game, and they kept fighting back,” Forgione recalls. “Eventually they came back to win 10-9. They never had a look of doubt on their faces.”
They also learned to play and think as a team, not as a group of individuals.
“They did not care about individual stats,” their coach points out. “They just wanted to win as a team and have fun doing it.”
The boys were very coachable, being able to listen and take critiques. They all showed up at practice ready to work and get better each day.
“They are a unique group of boys,” Forgione explains. “They are very tough and gritty kids, and they brought the energy level needed to get a team to the Sectional Finals.”
He feels that all the players have a better appreciation for each other as teammates and friends through this experience, and that they learned valuable lessons that will help get them through some difficult times that come up in their lives, and that will also allow them to create more opportunities in life.
Forgione gives credit to his coaching staff and the parents who helped out each day.
“They devoted themselves fully to the team and gave 100 percent of their energy wherever needed. Everyone was all-in, and the kids felt that and did not want to let each other down.
“I think the boys now have higher expectations for where this team can go next year – and they all realize they will need to keep working hard and not feel satisfied – and they understand that more positives will come our way. I believe in them that they will deliver on this,” Forgione concludes.