Mia Chiaro Named Scholar-Athlete of the Year by LIAA

Mia Chiaro2By Steve Svetovich

Dunmore High School graduating senior Mia Chiaro is the recipient of the Lackawanna Interscholastic Athletic Association (LIAA) female scholar-athlete of the year award.

“I was really excited when I heard about this,” Mia said. “It was a big moment for me and everyone else because of all the disappointments we had in sports this year due to COVID-19. It was nice to be recognized for something after going through all of that.”

Daughter of Alyssa and Nick Chiaro, Dunmore, the scholar-athlete was a key participant at Dunmore for soccer, swimming and track and field. She was also a football cheerleader. She had a 3.8 grade point average, including a 99 average in her final two quarters.

Mia was first-team all-star for track and field in her sophomore and junior years. She was a first-team all-star for soccer once and second-team twice. 

She ran the 100 meter and 300 meter hurdles and participated in the 4 by 1 and 4 by 4 for the Dunmore track and field team.

She credits her swimming coach John Andreoli for being a strong mentor. “He really cares about us,” Mia said. “He inspired us to be better. He had a talk with us that really gave us confidence and got us motivated. We became highly competitive and we kept improving to become an excellent swimming team. We had a great team bond. I will never forget the lessons learned and the spirit of our team.”

Mia, well spoken and articulate, said she will attend the University of Pittsburgh and study political science in the fall. She wants to attend law school in the future.

“I want to become a lawyer and possibly become a politician in the future,” she said. “I hope to play some club soccer at Pitt.” 

Mia enjoys listening to music and is a big fan of Kanye West. 

Mia Chiaro1As a three-sport athlete and cheerleader, she proved to be highly versatile. “I like to be involved and active,” she said. “So that is a no brainer for me. I like being a part of something special. And as most know, being a part of any sport at Dunmore usually results in something special. The coaches here teach you so much about sports and life. And the teammates you have result in lifetime friendships. You develop a great bond with your teammates.”

Mia said she gets her competitive spirit from her parents.

“My parents always tell me nothing gets handed to you. You need to work hard to develop a competitive work ethic.”

The aspiring law student and politician lit up when speaking of her experience at Dunmore High School. “You get a lot of opportunities to express yourself and get involved at Dunmore,” she said. “You develop lifelong friendships and you are a part of something special. All of the sports you participate in at Dunmore are special. 

“Our coaches and teachers at Dunmore teach us to be competitive on and off the field and in life. And this all translates to life as you transition beyond high school. It is such a great experience at Dunmore.”

Athlete of the Month: Steve Borgia

4ECE4150-7177-4ED4-8F62-C98128152107By Steve Svetovich

Dunmore junior quarterback Steve Borgia is a true scholar-athlete.

Son of Steve and Terry Borgia, Dunmore, he knows the importance of excelling in the classroom as well as being a leader in the three sports he participates in: football, baseball and basketball.

With a 98 academic average currently in his back pocket, the junior signal caller ran for two touchdowns and passed for another in Dunmore’s 49-0 route over Riverside Friday, Sept. 21, at Taylor.

The diminutive quarterback ran 51 and 33 yards for touchdowns in the first and second quarter and completed a 48-yard touchdown toss to Cristian Buckley in the first quarter in the win over Riverside.

Steve comes from a strong football family. His uncle Bill Lazor, former Scranton Central quarterback, played football at Cornell University and is the offensive coordinator for the Cincinnati Bengals. He has been an NFL coach for various teams over the past two decades.

bucksSteve is a starting guard, averaging seven points and three assists, on the Dunmore basketball team. He is the starting center fielder, hitting .280, for the Dunmore baseball team.

He hit his first high school home run last year as a member of the Dunmore baseball team. “That was pretty cool,” he said. “I hit it straight over centerfield. It was nice, a big thrill for me.”

Steve converted to quarterback this football season. He was a wide receiver-cornerback as a sophomore last season. As a freshman, he started most of the second half at cornerback.

He talked about what it takes to be a good high school quarterback. “You need to be smart and know what your teammates are doing. You need to be a strong leader.”

Steve talked about what it is like playing for Dunmore legendary coach Jack Henzes who has been away from the team thus far this season due to illness. “We are playing for him this year. We miss him greatly, but his presence is there and that helps us work harder. He is always on us to be better. We are hoping to see him back on the field this year.

“Coach Henzes always teaches us to stay together as a team and always work hard.”

Kevin McHale, Dunmore’s defensive coordinator, is coaching the Bucks in coach Henzes’ absence.

“He is doing a great job. Things are not much different. He follows coach Henzes’ rituals. Coach Henzes taught his coaches how to run the team.”

Steve, whose best subject is math, plans to study engineering in college. He wants to go to Penn State University in State College.

Playing three sports and maintaining a 98 academic average is not an easy task. “I pay close attention in class and manage my time wisely,” he said.

The talented, humble scholar- athlete said he has learned a lot from his parents. “They teach me to carry myself well on and off the field and be smart with my actions.”

Steve is a member of SADD, TACT and the French Club at Dunmore High School. He enjoys hip hop and rap music and would like to see Travis Scott in concert.

JVfootballThe Dunmore football team had some ups and some downs early on this season, but the junior stalwart expects only ups the rest of the way. “We are improving every day,” he said. “We will be very good and keep improving the rest of the season. We expect this to be a very strong year for us.”

He talked about his future goals. “I want to become an engineer and move to a big city where I can design things. I will keep playing the three sports and enjoy that until the time comes to study engineering, hopefully at Penn State. Then I will concentrate on that.”