The 49th Annual Schuylkill County Scholar-Athlete Award Banquet will be held this Sunday, March 28, at Pine View Acres, Pottsville, beginning at 5 p.m.
The event is sponsored by Schuylkill Chapter No. 25 of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.
The senior scholar-athletes representatives from 13 Schuylkill County high schools, plus Panther Valley, will be honored.
Representing THE TIMES NEWS area among the senior scholar-athletes will be Joseph Kloap, Marian Catholic; Andrew Tucker, Panther Valley; and Michael Gurcsik, Tamaqua Area.
The other seniors include Brook Gosch, Blue Mountain; Peter Stanakis, Mahanoy Area; Adrian Albertini, Minersville; Michael Klazas, Nativity; Zachary Hogan, North Schuylkill; Cale Hoover, Pine Grove; Eric Leymeister, Pottsville; Evan Fink, Schuylkill Haven; Daniel Merva, Shenandoah Valley; Matthew McGinley, Tri-Valley; and Dylan Smith, Williams Valley.
A 5-10, 165 pound wide receiver and defensive back, Kloap was a three-year member of the Marian grid squad and a two-year starter. He was also a dangerous kick returner. He was selected as First Team All-Area and Schuylkill County and is an Old Spice MVP Award recipient.
Kloap is also a four-year member of the Colts' baseball team.
Kloap is ranked in the top 10 percent of his class. He has been a consistent honor student at Marian and is currently taking Spanish IV as a dual credit course through Lehigh Carbon Community College. His school activities include Chess Club and Brain Teasers. He assists with the Men of Marian Festival each summer.
Kloap is considering Albright College, Wilkes University and Lebanon Valley College among his post secondary options.
Joseph is the son of Philip and Dolores Kloap of Jim Thorpe.
A 5-10, 225 pound offensive and defensive tackle, Tucker was a four-year member of the Panther Valley squad and a three-year starter. He served as a team captain and was selected as a two-year All-Academic Gold Team honoree by Pennsylvania Football News. He was a Second Team All-Schuylkill County selection.
Tucker also participated in track and field for three years. He has placed first in powerlifting competitions at Palmerton and Jim Thorpe.
Tucker is ranked in the top 10 percent of his class. He is a member of the National Honor Society and is a Pa. VFW Voice of Democracy essay winner for Post 8008 Nesquehoning and for District 20 (Carbon. Monroe and Northampton Counties) in 2006, 2008 and 2009. He was offered a Vickroy Scholarship from Lebanon Valley College.
Tucker's extracurricular activities include volunteering with his church, Toys For Tots, Lansford Little League, softball and the AMVETS flag program.
Tucker will continue his education at College Misercordia, pursuing a doctorate in Physical Therapy degree.
Andrew is the son of John and Lisa Tucker of Lansford.
A 6-4, 236 pound offensive tackle, center and defensive end, Gurcsik was a three-year starter and a team captain for the Blue Raiders. He was a First Team TIMES NEWS and Second Team All-Anthracite and Schuylkill County Coaches All-Star selection.
Gurcsik also participated in basketball for four years, serving as a captain his senior year.
Gurcsik is ranked in the top third of his class. He is involved with the German Club, Biology Club, Physics Club and the Emergency Response Team.
He is an Eagle Scout for Boy Scout Troop 777, Tamaqua and earned the Bronze Sports Award for Venture Crew 787.
Michael has been accepted at Kings College, Drexel and Temple and has received a Congressional nomination from U.S. Congressman Timothy Holden to attend the Merchant Marine Academy.
Michael is the son of John and Mary Gurcsik of Hometown.
Each school is invited to send six freshman scholar-athletes to the banquet.
Freshman from Marian include Damian Richards, Dylan Quirk, John Julian, Dominic Montero, Ryan Karnish and Eric Swankoski.
Representing Panther Valley will be Lukas Damian, Jake Szczecina, Mark Williams, Kyle Ferryman, Rich Nase and Charles Moore.
Tamaqua frosh include Brandon Fogel, Dylan Houser, Luke Matsago, Joshua Zehner, Austin Resch and Drew Chartier.