Vince Fedor Celebrates 50 Years Coaching Cross Country 

Vince FedorBy Steve Svetovich

He is 74 and showing no signs of slowing down. He doesn’t have time to celebrate, but the Dunmore community will celebrate him. 

The Dunmore Cross Country Reunion will celebrate Dunmore High School cross country coach Vince Fedor’s 50th year of coaching Friday, November 29, at La Buona Vita, 200 Reilly St., Dunmore. There will be a buffet dinner and cash bar at $25 per person. The event will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. 

Fedor’s Dunmore Junior High cross country team has gone 22-0 to remain undefeated for the fall season. Additionally, the boys were the overall winners  at the Vince Fedor Junior High League Championship meet held Oct. 19 at Mountain View High School.

“He has been there a very long time and is very dedicated to what he does,” said Gary Duncan who served for several years as a volunteer coach under Fedor.

“He instills a love of running to his students. He is very deserving of this honor. 

“As a parent of two daughters and uncle of two nieces and a nephew who were part of his program, I was able to be in his presence. 

“Coach Fedor was and is an inspiration to all those runners who were a part of his teams. He taught one and all about the importance of teamwork, as well as the benefits of being in top physical condition. My daughters, nieces, nephews and many runners in his program continue running to this day.”

sportsFedor was inducted into the Northeast Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in November of 2014.

The veteran Dunmore cross country coach has been active as a participant, organizer and coach in the local running community for the past 50 years.

He retired after 35 years as a Dunmore Elementary School teacher in 2004, but continued as the Dunmore High School cross country coach. He has no plans of retiring soon from that position. 

The Mansfield University graduate did not run cross country at Dunmore High School where he graduated in 1963. There was no team. The Dunmore High School cross country program started two years after his graduation. 

Fedor returned to Dunmore as the cross country coach in 1970. He has held the position ever since and takes the position very seriously. 

Fedor began running marathons in the early 1970’s. He is a founding member of the Scranton Organization of Area Runners. He organized the Father’s Day Race in Dunmore and became a founding committee member of the Steamtown Marathon. 

DHS Cross Country

Vince Fedor is pictured, top row, with members of the boys junior varsity cross country team. Shown middle row, from left to right: Nathan McMynne, Lucas Urban, Cory Domiano, Anthony Bonavoglia, Christopher Padula and Connor Mullaney. Bottom row: AJ Santarsiero, Max Hunt, Conor Toole, Tommy Clark, Cullen Smith, Gabe Franek and Joseph Lucas. Team members absent from photo: Jack Maloney, Kieran Hinton and Giulian Morrel.

The 50-year coach has been very successful at the helm of the Dunmore cross country program. Many members of his very first teams and beyond are still runners. 

His Dunmore cross country teams have won several Lackawanna League and District titles and individual District 2 boys’ titles. He has coached numerous individual state medal winners. Fedor is a well respected coach at Dunmore and continues to help local race directors in organizing events. 

Mike Deignan, a 1979 Dunmore High School graduate, was a cross country runner for Fedor and competed in the sport at Villanova University. He praised his former coach.

“Vince has coached teams and individuals, young men and women, to league and district championships and qualifying for state championships while being a role model beyond reproach.

“He has inspired many of his runners to continue competing post high school for NCAA teams. His positive influence on runners and the regional community in general cannot be overstated.”

Fedor himself, who shuns publicity, did recently tell reporters at Newswatch 16, that he doesn’t see an end in sight.

“I love what I’m doing. I can still do it. I have a great relationship with the kids I think. We all get along. We have fun the whole season… I am truly enjoying it, and that’s why I am hanging in here,” Fedor said.

Two-Time Super Bowl Champion Chris Snee Honored by Sports Hall of Fame

chris sneeBy Steve Svetovich

Former New York Giants two-time Super Bowl champion Chris Snee, Montrose, was among 11 selected to the Northeastern Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.

Prior to the annual Induction Ceremony held October 27 at the University of Scranton DeNaples Center, he spoke to The Dunmorean.

“This is an honor and a privledge to be here,” he said. “First, I received honors from Boston College as part of its Varsity Club Athletic Hall of Fame just last week and now this. I am very humbled by it all.

“It is a very emotional time for me, but a very good time to be a part of it all. I grew up in Montrose playing football. It is a game I love. And then this happens. It is a great honor. It feels good.”

Snee, during the exclusive interview, was asked his thoughts on the early season New York Giants quarterback situation when 19-year veteran, former teammate and fellow two-time Super Bowl champion Eli Manning was benched after two games in favor of rookie Daniel Jones.

“It was a tough decision and a busy camp for the Giants early on,” the 2000 Montrose High School graduate said. “The new quarterback Daniel Jones has a lot of talent. He looks like a keeper. I noticed early on the decision was undecided as to who to start, but they eventually went with the younger guy. I did not get the decision to bench Eli for that one game two years ago though. I did not get that at all.

“Eli is a tireless worker. I cannot say enough about Eli as both a football player and a man. He does so much preparation behind the scenes that people do not know about or see. Playing with Eli Manning, was an absolute pleasure. I do not know one person in the NFL who has a bad word to say about him. That is the ultimate tribute to a player.

Chris Snee

New York Giants two-time Super Bowl champion Chris Snee meets with Dunmorean sports editor Steve Svetovich.

“He is not the kind of guy who cares about cameras being in front of him. It was always a grind with him. His endless work would go unnoticed. His leadership and a lot of the work he did was never noticed because it was not in front of a camera.”

Son of Ed and Diane Snee, Montrose, the four-time NFL Pro Bowl selection is married to the former Kate Coughlin, the daughter of former New York Giants head football coach Tom Coughlin who Snee won two Super Bowls with. Snee and his wife have four children. 

Snee left Boston College before his senior year and was drafted by the New York Giants in the second round of the 2004 NFL draft. The right guard helped coach Coughlin, quarterback Manning and the Giants win two Super Bowls over coach Bill Belicheck, quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots. 

“If it were not for coach Tom Coughlin,” he said, “I would not be where I am today. I would not have accomplished what I did. Coach Coughlin made my transition from Boston College into the NFL a lot smoother. He was a very disciplined coach. I really learned how to be a disciplined, tough player under him. And we won some big games.”

Snee was two-time All-Regional, two-time All-State and three-time All-Conference as a defensive lineman at Montrose High School. He is the first NFL player to grow up in Susquehanna County. 

He was Regional Defensive Player of the Year in 1999. He recorded 47 quarterback sacks in his three years as a starter at Montrose. He recorded 101 tackles as a senior and led Montrose to district titles in 1997 and 1998.

At Boston College, he was a second team All America selection and All Big East Conference first-team selection in his final year.

Snee had hip surgery after playing in the 2013 Pro Bowl. He was placed on injured reserve in October 2013 and missed the rest of the season due to the injured hip. He retired from the NFL as a player in June 2014.

In May 2017, Snee was hired by Jacksonville Jaguars executive Vice President Tom Coughlin, his father-in law and former coach with the Giants, to be a scout and coaching assistant for the offensive line. 

“It keeps me very busy, ” he said. “There is a lot of travel.” 

Snee coaches Pee Wee football back home. 

“I loved growing up in this area,” he said. “I loved the small town atmosphere and all the friendships I made.”

Significantly down from his 305-pound playing weight, Snee helped Boston College win 25 games, including three bowl wins. It was there where he switched from the defensive to offensive line.

A three-time All Pro selection in the NFL, he said his mantra was “always work harder than the next guy.” Snee said he learned that work ethic from his parents while growing up in Susquehanna County.

“I learned about hard work from my parents. We are a family of few words. I watched them work and grind. 

“The best teams are motivated by the fear of letting each other down. I always played not only for my teammates, but for my family and friends back home.”

Sports Hall of Fame Induction Has Dunmore Flavor

sports

By Steve Svetovich

The Northeastern Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame had a Dunmore flavor during its 36th annual Induction Ceremony at the University of Scranton DeNaples Center last month.

The Induction Ceremonial Dinner, held October 27, included 10 new members plus an annual media award selection, Kent Westling.

Half of the 10 new inductees have Dunmore ties. And those five include long time Bishop O’Hara and Holy Cross basketball coach Al Callejas, former Bishop O’Hara softball and basketball standout Sara Harris Walsh, former Dunmore High School baseball and basketball star Kevin Walsh, Dunmore High School Superintendant John Marichak who was a three-sport athlete at Scranton Tech and four-year football starter at Villanova University and former Scranton Prep All-Scholastic football player Thomas O’Donnell who lettered at the Division I college level. O’Donnell had a contingent of Dunmore family members, including his brother Al, present at his induction. 

The other five inductees were Scranton Women’s Bowling Association standout Pamela Kiesel, distinguished long time basketball official James “Red” McAndrew, 42-year PIAA wrestling official Peter Smith, two-time Montrose All-State football lineman Chris Snee who was a four-time Pro Bowl selection and two-time Super Bowl champion with the New York Giants and two-time PIAA All-State cross country champion Carly Graytock Shea from Forest City High School. 

Bob Walsh, former University of Scranton assistant basketball coach, is Northeastern Chapter President.

Former Mid Valley baseball standout Jerry Valonis is Vice President of the Northeastern Chapter. Judy Igoe Carr, who provided the remarks, is secretary. Tom “Doc” Dougherty is treasurer. 

The executive committee of the Northeastern Chapter includes Walsh, Valonis, Igoe Carr, Rich Revta, Jerry Kowalski, Jerry Dempsey, Dougherty and Alice Foley who provided the benediction. 

Jim Coles, of WNEP-TV, served as toastmaster for the annual event.

The U.S. Marine Corps provided presentation of colors.

Callejas, in 25 years of high school basketball coaching and still going strong, has won 488 games, eight Lackawanna League titles and nine District II championships. His teams currently have earned 12 consecutive berths to the PIAA State tournament. Callejas spoke of having the unique opportunity to coach his sons at Holy Cross. 

Graytock Shea won both the District 12 Cross Country title and was the 3200m champ at Forest City. She was a two-time PIAA All-State cross country champion. She was a three-time all-Patriot League cross country performer and two-time Regional Mid Atlantic All-Star at Bucknell University. 

Kiesel was the first woman in the Scranton Women’s Bowling Association to roll a perfect 300 game. In 1981, she was one of only four women in the United States with two 800-series to her credit. She is a member of the Scranton WBA and Chic Feldman Hall of Fame.

Marichak was a baseball, basketball and football standout at Scranton Tech. He was a two-time All-Scholastic linebacker and MVP in the Lackawanna League basketball All-Stsr game. He was Yankee Conference All-Academic during a four-year football career at Villanova. He was head football coach at Honesdale and Scranton High School. He compiled a 57-46 record in nine years at Scranton where his teams were two-time Lackawanna Football Conference Division I champs. The self-made Marichak spoke of the importance and influence of his family during his speech. 

McAndrew was a two-sport athlete at Scranton Tech. As a highly respected basketball official, he worked Division I, II and III. He has been a PIAA high school basketball official for over 35 years and received the John Nucatola award at the College Basketball Officials Association banquet. Popular and well spoken, he received plenty of cheers at the Induction and drew laughs from the crowd during his speech. He spoke of attending a camp for officials and learning the trade before going back later in his career to mentor and teach himself. 

O’Donnell was an All-Scholastic football player at both offensive guard and defensive tackle at Scranton Prep. He is the first ever Scranton Prep player to,letter at the Division I college level. He was a two-year letter winner for the Army football team. He won the Commander and Chiefs Trophy at West Point and was selected to play in the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas.

Smith was team captain for the football, wrestling and baseball teams at Abington Heights High School. As head wrestling coach at Abington, his teams were 56-15 from 1968 through 1973. His teams were Suburban League champions in 1970, 1972, 1973 and co-champs in 1971. As a 42-year PIAA wrestling official, he worked in 12 State championships. He received the prestigious Abington Area Award for 50 years of service to wrestling.

Snee was Regional Defensive Player of the Year in 1999 as a member of Montrose High School football. He was a second-team All American football lineman at Boston College. He was chosen by the New York Giants in the second round of the 2004 NFL draft and went on to win two Super Bowls with the team before retiring in 2014. He is currently a scout with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Walsh was MVP for both the baseball and basketball teams at Dunmore High School. He was a 1,000-point scorer and collected over 500 rebounds at Dunmore. He was a two-time Lynett Memorial Tournament selection and also its MVP. In baseball, he was a two-time League and District champion at Dunmore. He was a two-time Freedom League and Middle Atlantic Conference champion at Wilkes College. He was named six times to the All Tournament team averaging 10 points and eight rebounds over his college career at Wilkes. He is currently an NCAA basketball official and PIAA baseball and basketball official. He worked the Sweet-16 tournament on the Division II level for basketball. 

Harris Walsh was a four-time Lackawanna League Southern Division All-Star and three-time Chic Feldman Tournament selection at Bishop O’Hara High School in Dunmore. She was three-time MVP of the Scranton Jaycees/LJC Holiday Tournament. She was a 1,000 point scorer and All Region selection in basketball three times. She was a two-time All Regional softball player. She was selected to the Patriot League’s All Rookie team for basketball at Lafayette College.

Westling was the well respected Play-by-Play broadcaster for the Scranton Wilkes-Barre Red Barons from 1989 through 2007. He worked as the football and basketball radio announcer for Wilkes University and a Play-by-Play announcer for University of Scranton basketball. He was TV Sports Director and Anchor for WYOU from 1981 through 1987. He was Play-by-Play announcer for the St, Louis Blues hockey team of the NHL.Westling has interviewed the likes of late heavy weight boxing champion Muhammad Ali, former boxing champs Mike Tyson and Larry Holmes and the late Joe Frazier, actor Paul Newman and race car driver Richard Petty.