James Franklin to Headline Penn State Alumni Dinner in Scranton

PSU Alumni

Board members shown seated from left are: Steve Weissberger, Sue Thomas and Candy Dolgash. Standing, same order: Dick Kenny, Deb Johnson, Rich Dunkailo, Doug Mallas, Mike Rescigno, Ted Zayac, Dave Tasselmyer, Sue Grisewood, Jeff Mallas, President, Carm Piedmont and Dave Garvey.

The Greater Scranton Chapter of the Penn State Alumni Association has announced that James Franklin, head football coach at Penn State, will headline the 2018 “Penn State Night” dinner on Wednesday May 23.  The Scranton Chapter is thrilled to welcome back Coach Franklin for the landmark 40th annual dinner. Coach Franklin returns to the area after his appearance at the Chapter’s dinner in 2014.

Franklin will meet with local alumni and fans and talk about Penn State’s 2017 season that ended with 11 wins, a Top-10 national ranking, and Fiesta Bowl victory; as well as preparations for the 2018 campaign, and how all Penn State alumni and fans can help build on Penn State football’s tradition of excellence.

7c6c441d09e7139963e22d9f944a8104Penn State Night will feature not only Coach Franklin but also the “Voice” of Penn State, Steve Jones. The dinner will also name a special 2018 “Alumna of the Year,” Sue Thomas, who has made tremendous contributions to Penn State University in many ways throughout her lifetime.   The Penn State chapter will also announce and present several scholarships to current Penn State students.

While the upcoming Penn State Caravan 2018 registrations in three cities will be limited to Alumni Association or Nittany Lion Club members, that restriction will not be placed on this special appearance by Coach Franklin.  A limited number of tickets will be available to the public through the chapter.

The event will be at Genetti Manor in Dickson City with doors opening at 6 p.m. With the large crowd expected, autographs will be not be provided but Coach Franklin will be available for a photo op between 6:30-7:15. Dinner and program will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $50 per person.

For tickets please call the Scranton Campus at 570-963-2537 or visit the Chapter website to purchase tickets.  

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DHS Band and Twirlers Take Part in “Blue Band Jam” at Penn State

 

blue jamThe Blue Band Jam returned for a fourth season in Happy Valley last month. The pregame performance took place on September 16 at the Bryce Jordan Center, located on Penn State University’s Main Campus, prior to Penn State’s faceoff against Georgia State.

The annual performance featured the Penn State Blue Band, which includes Dunmore High School graduate Josh Cantarella, and 12 high school marching bands from across Pennsylvania.

Marching band members and featured twirlers from Dunmore High School were among those who traveled to Centre County to take part in the event. The band is under the direction of Nicole Zywicki and is assisted by Karen Brown.

DHS Featured twirlers shown in photo above are: Mariana Leo, Marlene Pegula, Antoinette Cantarella and Kaleigh Carey.

 

Dunmorean of the Month: Kayleigh Semion

 

kayleighBy Steve Svetovich

Dunmore High School graduate Kayleigh Semion could have played Division II or III college basketball just about wherever she wanted, but her dream was to go to Penn State.

When she enrolled at Penn State she thought her basketball career could be over, but it wasn’t. Now the 2015 Times-Tribune Player of Year is really living her dream.

She is a key member of the Penn State University women’s club basketball team.

And while it is not Division I varsity level, this team plays a brand of highly competitive basketball with six to eight tournaments throughout the year. The team practices at least two hours three nights per week.

Daughter of Sherry Nicolais and step-daughter of Mark Nicolais, Kayleigh, 20, is a sophomore Kinesiology major with aspirations to eventually become a physical therapist.

An All Regional and second team All State point guard at Dunmore in her senior season, she had opportunities to play division II or III college basketball, but her dream was to attend Penn State.

Then the opportunity came to tryout for the club basketball team. The tryout was competitive and intense, but Kayleigh, a sophomore at Penn State, made the roster. Now she gets to attend Penn State and play basketball.

With over 1,200 career points at Dunmore, she quickly became a key member of the club basketball team. She averaged 14.0 points, 5.0 assists and 4.0 steals per game in her senior season at Dunmore and is playing that same type of game for the Penn State club team. She averaged 8.0 points and 4.5 assists mostly coming off the bench for the club team this season.

She helped her Penn State club team place in third place in the National Intramural Recreational Sports Association Championship tournament last month at Ohio State University. Her team beat Virginia Tech, Ohio University and the University of Connecticut, but lost to Air Force. She came off the bench to score 13 points against Virginia Tech.

Kayleigh was named to the All-Tournament team following the Regional Championship Tournament at Boston University earlier this year. Her Penn State club team won that tournament.

“It is very competitive basketball,” she said. ” It is on the level of division II or III college basketball. We practice hard and get to go away to games. We get to practice all the time. The games are highly competitive. The players love to compete. It is a terrific experience. And it is great representing Penn State.”

Breana Toro, former Lackawanna League all-star from Abington Heights, is a member of her club team.

Two of the girls on the club team were promoted to the Penn State varsity roster after injuries to players last season. Most of the girls on the club team attend the varsity games.

And Kayleigh is even a manager for the Penn a State varsity team.

“I will do anything I can to stay in the game,” she said. “I love basketball.”

The scholar-athlete has an impressive 3.8 grade point average at Penn State. She takes a lot of what Dunmore coach Ben O’Brien instilled in her. “He taught me about work ethic . He is really into what he does as a coach. He really helped me as a basketball player.”

Kayleigh also ran track at Dunmore and was a twirler.

She and her two sisters Brittany and Meredith learned twirling from her mom, a prominent twirling instructor in Dunmore.

“My mom always teaches me to go after whatever I want in life 110 percent at a time. She tells me to go after it full speed.”

Personable and full of life, Kayleigh knows she is living her dream at Penn State. “I love it here,” she said. “I always dreamed of going here. I look around and here I am. I love the atmosphere here. And I still get to play basketball.”

Kayleigh said she likes listening to music in her spare time. She would like to see Ed Sheeran in concert.

And while she continues to do what she loves at her dream college, Kayleigh thinks of her future. “I want to get into a physical therapy school after graduation. It is highly competitive, but I want to become a physical therapist.”

And competition seems to be something Kayleigh Semion thrives on.

 

McGloin Signs Deal with Eagles; Recognized by Commissioners

Matt McGloin proclamation photo

The Lackawanna County Commissioners and community leaders presented a proclamation to Matt McGloin in recognition of his success on the gridiron.

The former Penn State quarterback and Scranton native recently signed a one-year deal with the Philadelphia Eagles.  His four-year NFL career spans several milestones with the Oakland Raiders.

Shown from left: Lackawanna County Judge Thomas Munley, Atty. Terry Gallagher, Commissioner Laureen A. Cummings, Mr. McGloin, Commissioner Patrick M. O’Malley and Jack Lyons, West Scranton head basketball coach.