Doin’ Dunmore: Jill Korgeski Makes Memories with Honors 

Jill Korgeski

Jill Korgeski of Dunmore has been named as the 2019-20 Outdoor Track and Field Senior Scholar-Athlete of the Year by the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC).. The award concludes an outstanding career by the program’s first All-American.

By Steve Svetovich

Often, good hard working people have a knack of making memories with their accomplishments. 

Take Dunmore graduate Jill Korgeski for instance. 

Daughter of Brian and Janet Korgeski, Jill, 23, capped an outstanding scholar-athletic career with her selection as 2019-20 Middle Athletic Conference Outdoor Track and Field Senior Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

The Senior Scholar-Athlete Award recognizes student-athletes for their strong academic and athletic accomplishments and excellence. 

It is the most prestigious honor given to a student-athlete by the conference for combined academic excellence and athletic achievement. 

Jill earned the award despite not being able to complete in her senior year due to the COVID-19 pandemic which cancelled the season.

Jill was a two-time NCAA qualifier in the shot put, earning All-America status at the 2018 NCAA Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships by placing fifth with a school record toss of 47 feet, 1 inch. 

As a freshman, she finished 13th in the shot put in the national championships. 

Three times, she was named to the USTFCCCA All-Region team. After finishing second in 2016 and 2017, she won the shot put title at the MAC Championships in 2018. Jill was a three-time selection as the conference’s Field Athlete of the Week.

Academically, Jill is scheduled to earn a graduate degree as a physician assistant major. She has an impressive 3.7 academic average.  

Jill was selected to the CoSIDA Academic All-District team in 2017 and three times was selected to the USTFCCCA All-Academic team and twice to the MAC All-Academic team. She was three times on the MAC Academic Honor Roll.

“I was really excited when I heard about receiving this award,” Jill said from her Dunmore home. “It is a tribute to the coaches who always put school above athletics. All of the coaches at King’s preach that.”

Jill said she is looking forward to obtaining her graduate degree this August and then obtaining employment as a physician assistant preferably in orthopedics or as a hospitalist.

Also a three-year member of the women’s volleyball team at King’s, Jill was also a member of the women’s indoor track and field team at the college. She played three years of outdoor track at King’s, missing a fourth due to COVID-19. 

She talked about what it takes to excel as a shot putter. “It takes a lot of repetition and focus on technique. You need to get in the weight room and build strength. 

Jill was a three-sport standout student-athlete at Dunmore. She played four years each of volleyball, basketball and track and field while excelling in the classroom. 

An outside hitter in volleyball, Jill was Regional Player of the Year twice and an All-State volleyball player as a senior at Dunmore.

She graduated from Dunmore in 2015 and received a B.S. in biology at King’s in 2019. She will receive her graduate degree in the physician assistant program this August completing all of her studies and course work in five years.

Jill praised Kevin McHale, her track and field coach at Dunmore. “Coach McHale taught me the importance about being passionate about a sport or anything in life. He was great with our workouts. We had a lot of them. He showed us how to put passion into our weight lifting program.”

IMG_5370

Jill Korgeski of Dunmore, is shown with Michael Kolinovsky, her coach at King’s College, taken at Nationals in Boston, MA during her indoor track senior year.

The scholar-athlete said she also learned a lot from Michael Kolinovsky, her track and field coach at King’s. “He taught me the importance of dedication to the sport. He taught me to take the good days with the bad days and don’t harp on the bad days. Keep pushing towards your goals.”

The hard driving graduate student said she found her King’s College experience very much like her four years at Dunmore High School.

“It is very similar to Dunmore. Everyone knows each other. There is a lot of support and plenty of athletic programs. It is a tight knit college and a lot like Dunmore High. People help each other out.”

Jill said she enjoys music and would like to see country artist Kenny Chesney in concert. She has been keeping busy at home during the COVID-19 pandemic studying and working towards finishing her graduate studies. “The school and professors are doing a great job getting us ready for graduation,” she said.

Jill credited her parents for much of her success as she looks to the future. “They taught me about hard work and that there are no shortcuts in life. If you put your mind to something or towards a goal, then do it with passion.”

Athlete of Month: Olivia Krupski

Athlete of the Month Olivia Krupski athleteBy Steve Svetovich

Olivia Krupski was one of the leaders as the Holy Cross Lady Crusaders won a district softball title and advanced to the state semifinals, but now she is taking her star to Kings College in Wilkes Barre.

Olivia, a Times-Tribune all-star second baseman, batted close to .400 with five homers, 34 RBIs and a team leading nine doubles. 

Daughter of Donna and Tim Krupski, Olivia, 18, graduated from Holy Cross High School at the end of May and will now hone her softball skills at Kings where she will major in biology.

She credits her late grandfather, Paul Krupski, former sports writer for the defunct Scrantonian Tribune, for getting her interested in sports. Her grandfather was a local basketball referee and baseball and softball umpire. 

“He died when I was seven,” said Olivia. “But he and my dad were always talking about sports and got me interested. My grandfather is the primary reason I started playing sports. He got me into sports,”

Olivia played four years of both softball and soccer at Holy Cross. She was an all-star soccer player as a senior when she suffered a torn meniscus in the middle of the season.

She was a second team all-star in softball as a junior.

Olivia said she would like to use a biology degree to get into lab research or possibly eventually become a nurse anesthetist. 

Holy Cross lost the state semi final game, 9-0, to Brandywine Heights after defeating Conwell Egan, 11-0, in the opening round at Arcadia.

Status-FastPitch-Game-Leather-SoftballHoly Cross won its third straight District 2 title, 10-3, over Northwest Area, Thursday, May 30, at University of Scranton Magis Field.

Olivia hit a clutch sacrifice fly in a five-run first inning to start the game as star junior pitcher Jenna Bradley cruised with a complete game five-hitter, striking out 11 and walking none.

Holy Cross finished the season with an 18-6 record.

Olivia, who participated in the Field of Dreams softball game last month, had a 3.3 grade point average at Holy Cross. Her favorite subject is math.

“I loved my four years at Holy Cross,” she said. “It was honestly great. I came from a public school at Mid Valley, so I went from a very large school to a small school. Holy Cross is so loving and caring. We are all like family. There are no clicks. We are all friends with each other. Everyone knows you, but like a caring family.”

Olivia, well spoken and articulate, said her parents taught her a lot about composure. “They taught me about preparation and having a positive attitude. In the beginning during games, I would get hard on myself. They would tell me to pick myself up. I would look into the stands and they would give me a signal to pick it up. I could see them telling me to take it off and pick it up. That meant the world to me.”

Olivia, full of enthusiasm, said she attributes the success of the Holy Cross softball team this year to coach Joe Ross. “Coach Ross coached the seniors during our entire four years. He took over after XE McAndrew died, so my senior class was his first team. I remember like it was yesterday when he came in to talk to us. He wanted to carry on the softball tradition at Holy Cross in the memory of XE McAndrew.

Holy Cross Softball Team

“Coach Ross gives the best speeches. He is a great coach and is carrying on the XE McAndrew legacy. He is starting his own legacy in memory of XE McAndrew.”

Olivia loves listening to music in her spare time and is hoping to see Fleetwood Mac in concert soon. “I was supposed to see them recently, but it was postponed until the fall. I am supposed to go with my parents.”

Olivia looks to her future with great anticipation. “I will be playing softball and studying biology. It will not be easy studying a science in college, so I need to stay on top of things. I need to find the right balance between softball and my school work. I want to stay organized and stay on top of both. I have to balance my time well. I am looking forward to it all, but will certainly miss my great times at Holy Cross.”

Holy Cross Softball Player Headed to King’s College

Olivia Krupski

Holy Cross High School senior, Olivia Krupski has committed to King’s College for softball. Shown seated, from left: Tim Krupski, Olivia Krupski and Donna Krupski. Standing, same order: Al Callejas, HCHS Athletic Director; Joe Ross, HCHS Softball Head Coach, and Neil Hochreiter, HCHS Assistant Softball Coach.