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46th Curbstone Coaches Hall of Fame Banquet



Published: Mon, April 29, 2013 @ 12:00 a.m.

The 46th Curbstone Coaches Hall of Fame Banquet will take place on Sunday with 13 new members set to be enshrined during ceremonies at Mr. Anthony’s Banquet Center, South Avenue, Boardman. Jim Tressel, former Youngstown State and Ohio State football coach, will be the guest speaker.

The 2013 class has Adam Barta (bowling), Richard Canacci (football), Marla Chicase (bowling), Melanie Congemi-Stitt (track & field), Robert Eckenrode (bowling), John “J.C.” Elliott (softball), Jim Ferraro (baseball), Seth Jaffee (basketball), Mike Koranicki (boxing/posthumous), Steve Krivonak (contribution to sports), Jim Leone (racquetball), Dick Marlowe (all-sports award) and Bill Sferra (special award).

Tickets for the event cost $50 and may be obtained by calling Mike Murray at 330-565-7820, or by visiting the organization’s website at www.curbstonecoaches.org.

ADAM BARTA

Bowling

A 1997 graduate of Girard High, he has been the number-one-ranked amateur bowler since 2001. In 2011, he had the most Pittsburgh Bowlers Tour titles with 22 while his 246 average during the 2001-02 season was the highest in the United States. The winner of various local, regional and national tournaments, his 250.90 average was the highest recorded for a season in the Youngstown Bowling Association.

RICHARD CANACCI

Football

A 1959 graduate of East High and 1965 graduate of YSU, he lettered in football, baseball and golf for four years. He was co-captain two years in football where he helped his alma mater to two City Series crowns. A two-way performer, he was first-team All-City and first-team all-area as well. He attended the University of Iowa but transferred to then-Youngstown University where he earned four letters for the Penguins from 1961-64.

MARLA CHICASE

Bowling

A 1985 graduate of Boardman High, she was a member of the Ladies Professional Regional Tour from 1991-2003 and the Ladies Professional National Tour from 1997-2002. She won her first professional regional tournament, the Van Wert Open in 1999, following that up with her second tour win the following year when she captured the Columbus Open. In 2002-03, she was the Ladies Professional Bowlers Tour “Bowler of the Year’ and also its point and money leader. Locally, she has been ranked in the top-eight in average for the past 20 years and has 18 300 games and 12 299 games.

MELANIE CONGEMI-STIT

Track and Field

A four-year letter-winner in track and a two-year letter-winner in boys cross country while at Cardinal Mooney High, she still holds records in the 400m dash, 800m relay, 1600m relay and 400m relay. She was the Steel Valley Conference champion in the 200 and 400 dash and 400 and 800 relays her junior and senior seasons, earning meet Most Valuable Player honors in 1986. She earned All-Ohio honors three years and was All-Steel Valley Conference four years. A two-year letter-winner in track and cross country at Mississippi, she twice was a Southeastern Conference All-Academic selection.

ROBERT ECKENRODE

Bowling

A 1984 graduate of Mooney, he was a PBA member from 1990-95, competing in five national events including the ABA Masters. He rolled a 299 in 1991 and has won multiple Youngstown City Masters and All Events championships. With 30 300 games to his credit, he is also the architect of 15 800 series, has rolled 20 299 games and five 298 games.

John “J.C.” ELLIOTT

Softball

He earned three letters in baseball for East High. A pitcher/third baseman, he was elected to the East High School Hall of Fame in 2003. A three-year letter-winner for Dom Rosselli’s diamond squad from 1963-65, he helped the team to their first postseason appearance in 1964. He was a softball standout and helped the teams with whom he played to a variety of city championships where he was an all-league selection on 15 occasions.

JIM FERRARO

Baseball

During his formative years, he played in the local Pony League and as an all-star, helped Youngstown to the United States Regional Tournament and the Pony League World Series in Washington, Pa. He played football for The Rayen School and baseball for Dom Rosselli at YSU. A four-year letter-winner for the Penguins from 1965-68, he helped them to a 67-22 (.753) overall mark. During his collegiate career, he registered 52 runs batted in and was considered one of the best clutch hitters during that era.

SETH JAFFEE

Basketball

He played for The Rayen School under coaches Ted Theodosoff and John Georges. As a junior, he averaged seven points and 11 rebounds per game, helping the Tigers to a 10-8 overall mark. As a senior, the Tigers went 10-8 with Jaffee averaging 12 points and 14 caroms per fray, pulling down a career-high 19 rebounds against North High. He was All-City Series and Honorable Mention All-Northeastern Ohio as a senior. He earned a scholarship to California (Pa.) State University and was a four-year letter-winner for the Vulcans. He finished his collegiate career by scoring more than 900 points and hauling in 735 rebounds.

MIKE KORANICKI

Boxing

A leading heavyweight contender from 1973-83, he won his first professional fight over Larry McGee and would win his first 11 professional fights over a 15-month span. He scored wins over formidable opponents such as Tom Prater, Nick Wells, George Chaplin, Domingo D’Elia, Jimmy Abbott and Bennie Knoetze. His most memorable win came against Kallie Knoetze in Cape Town, South Africa, when he scored a 10th-round KO over the South African native and the division’s top-ranked title contender. He posted a 27-9-2 professional mark with 15 KO’s.

STEVE KRIVONAK

Contributor

Considered one of the very best baseball players and sandlot coaches to come out of the Mahoning Valley, “Sheeny” is also one of the Mahoning Valley’s top racquetball players. A graduate of Chaney High where he played football, he played in the 1960 PONY League World Series in Washington, Pa., where he set records for most doubles in a game (three) and most hits in a contest (four) in the 13-14 age group. He played shortstop for Girard Zicard Furniture of the local Class B League. At Kent State University, he earned three varsity letters in baseball. He made a smooth transition from the playing field to the coaching box and in 1971 and again in 1984, managed the Campbell A.C. entry of the local Class B League to the National Amateur Baseball Federation national championship. Under his watch, they won three consecutive league titles on two separate occasions; from 1969-71 and then again from 1983-85.

JIM LEONE

Racquetball

Curbstone’s first racquetball inductee, he started playing the sport at age 13 at Racquetball South and plays and teaches at the Youngstown YMCA where he also serves as staff pro. During a stellar five-decade career, he has won four district championships, four regional championships, six state singles crowns, eight state doubles titles and national doubles championship, finishing as national doubles runners-up, on two other occasions. In 1985, he played and represented the United States in the Pan American Games.

DICK MARLOWE

All-Sports Award

He is a 1969 graduate of Springfield Local High where he was the first four-year golf letterman in school history. He has five career holes-in-one while winning two Mahoning County Amateur titles and seven Tippecanoe Country Club championships. He qualified for three USGA Sr. Amateur Championships (2008, 2011 and 2012), advancing to the round of 16 in 2011. As a bowler, he has maintained a 200-plus average, has four perfect games to his credit and three league titles. From 1974-2009, he was a mainstay in the Steel Valley Slo-Pitch League. As a quarterback in the local touch football league, he played from 1975-2005 and in all, guided his teams to 17 city crowns, 14 state championships and two national titles. He was inducted into the United States Touch Football League Hall of Fame in l991.

BILL SFERRA

Special Award

An Ursuline High graduate, he participated in football and track and field. He was a two-year starter and letter-winner. He was instrumental in developing the Saturday Slow-Pitch League. As one of the area’s most respected officials, he has umpired 10 OHSAA state girls softball finals and 15 regional finals tilts. Among his various football tournament assignments, he was selected to work two state semifinals. He also has umpired in Class AA and B sandlot baseball leagues. He was the recipient of the National Federation of High School Umpires Association “Umpire of the Year” in 1999 and was also honored as the National Softball Association “Umpire of the Year” in 2004. He served as NSA Tournament director in 2007 and is the organization’s assistant Umpire-in-Chief for Ohio.


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