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Nesquehoning to induct three new members

  • Joe Ligenza
    Joe Ligenza
Published March 23. 2013 09:02AM

The Carbon County Sports Hall of Fame will inducted it 2013 class on May 26 at Memorial Hall in Jim Thorpe.

The doors will open at 12:45 with cocktail hour from 1-2 p.m. Dinner will be at 2 p.m. with the induction ceremony to follow.

Anyone looking for tickets to the banquet can contact any of the following people: Art George 610-826-2830; Jake Boyer 610-751-6634; Danny McGinley 570-325-3550; Tom Wehr 570-366-2694; Trevor Lawrence 570-645-4722; Ted Bortnick 570-645-9575; Emmett McCall 570-645-2093; Bob Gelatko 570-645-8652; Tom McGrath 570-668-2237; Gary Clemson 570-668-1066; Tom Pilla 570-669-6666; Bill Gardiner 570-669-6564.

This year's class includes the follow members:

TAMAQUA - Mike Hromyak Sr., Robert "Bob" Clemson, Sean Love.

JIM THORPE - Peggy Sue O'Donnell, Joe Morgan, Jack Morgan.

NESQUEHONING - Joe Ligenza, Bill Morgan, Charles Zabroski, Tom Pilla.

LEHIGHTON - Jim Tkach, Larry Mertz, Jennifer (Harleman) Lopata.

SUMMIT HILL - Joe Leonzi, Ed Kusko, Frank Santo.

PALMERTON - Billy Heydt, Bruce Kocher, Steve Kocher, Steve Barilla.

LANSFORD - Caszy Kosciolek, Roberta (Spezialetti) Porambo, Bill Maynard.

COALDALE - Pete Radocha, Diana Demianenko, Joseph Ozefovich, John Posta.

Over the next several Saturdays, the TIMES NEWS will run brief biographies of this year's class.

Following are the inductees from Nesquehoning:


Morgan is a 1953 graduate of Nesquehoning High School where he played four years of football under Tony Mezza and Sam Pagano. He played left end playing on both sides of the ball under the single-wing formation with an 8-1 season.

Morgan played four years of basketball, starting his junior and senior year under the direction of head coach George Roscoe. He also participated in the track program under Bob Steventon and the 100 yard dash, the broad jump and the high jump having qualified for the PIAA District and State meets.

After graduating high school, Morgan joined the US Navy and served on the Destroyer Lewis Hancock DD675. After returning home, he was then employed by John J. Nesbitt Co. in Philadelphia, Pa. He played in the fast pitch softball and basketball in the Philadelphia Industrial League.

Morgan and his family relocated to Enfield, CT., where he was a service manager for Heating and Air Conditioning. He retired in 2000.

Morgan was married to the late Ann Becker from Lansford and they have four children - Sharon, David, Scott and Bill, Jr., along with six grandchildren - Danielle, Alexa, Taylor, Michael, Sarah and Abbi.


Zabroski graduated from Nesquehoning High School in 1960 where he was an outstanding athlete in football, basketball, golf and also participated in gymnastics.

Zabroski held different class offices during his school years. In sports, he was a four-year letterman in football, two years in basketball, three years in golf and three years in gymnastics.

In football, he played guard during his freshman and sophomore years, while switched to fullback during his junior and senior years. He went on to win the area scoring championship in his junior year and finished second in his senior year. In his junior year, Nesquehoning won the Area Mythical Championship finishing 7-2 overall. He was elected to the All-Anthracite All-Stars in both his junior and senior years.

Zabroski was an average basketball player, but was a good rebounder who scored average points. In golf, he once shot a 48 on the front nine and a 41 on the back nine in the district tournament.

Zabroski was picked to play in the UniCo All-Star Football Game, but declined because of summer practice at Bullis Prep School for entrance into college. He played two-ways at Bullis. He played against the Naval Academy Plebes, Roger Staubach. After prep school, he was called to active duty with the Navy where he served in the Cuban Missile Crisis.

After the Navy, Zabroski relocated to Long Island New York and entered into Industry. He worked at Grumman Aerospace in New York. He was honored to work on all lunar lander modules in the NASA Space program's trip to the moon. While at Grumman, Zabroksi played on the softball team, which won the national championship in 1966.

Zabroski went on to CDC Computer Training School and became a computer tech. He was in the computer industry for 20 years. He moved around the country with job assignments where he he has been in every state in the lower 48.

Zabroski recently passed away on February 10, 2013. He was married to Pricilla (Varanko) Zabroski, who resides in Whitehall, PA. They have two children - a son Charles, Jr., and a family who lives in the Pittsburgh area and a daughter Carrie Anne and family who lives in Oxford, PA. They have four grandchildren.


Joe graduated from Nesquehoning High School in 1963, from whre he lettered in Basketball and Football.

In his junior year, he set a single game scoring record with 52 points against Pleasant Valley playing just three quarters. He made 23 field goals and was a perfect 6-for-6 from the line.

He also won the scoring title in the Panther Valley-Carbon County Area that year averaging 26 points a game.

As a senior, Ligenza was part of a team that defeated Minersville 60-48 in the first round of the District 11 Class B playoffs before losing to Saint Clair in the second round, 71-59, despite scoring 22 points.

Ligenza was the first ever T-formation quarterback for the Hurricanes under Coach Wojciehowski.

He also played basketball at Penn State Hazleton in 1967-68 before graduating from PSU in 1971.

Joe was a teacher for 33 years at Carbon-Lehigh I.U.21 and Carbon County Vo-Tech.

Ligenza was a PIAA Basketball and Football referee for 37 years and umpired baseball for 17 years. He officiated quite a few District 11 championships in all three sports, one PIAA Basketball State Championship, two PIAA Football State Championships (one of which, Manheim Central vs. Pine-Richland, is still considred the most exciting championship game ever played. Called the Snow Bowl, Manheim won 39-38 in two overtimes).

Although retired as an active official, he evaluated officials in the PIAA tournament.

Joe resides in Hometown and was married 34 years to the late Theresa Boyuka Ligenza. They had two children, a daughter Danelle, wife of Jamie Kane of Lake Hauto and a son Joe, wife Adrienne, of Brockton. He also has four grandchildren, Makenna and Luke Kane and Mason and Lauren Ligenza.

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