NEPA Sports Nation

Time for Suits & Sneakers Week

Pictured above: Andrew Kettel (facing camera) and Larry Pegula at Coaches vs. Cancer Media Day in November. (Tony Callaio Photo)

Valley View led the nation in Coaches vs. Cancer fundraising by a public high school during 2022 and served as an appropriate place to offer an advance look at this year’s fundraising efforts among District 2 schools.

Coaches vs. Cancer Suits & Sneakers Week in northeastern Pennsylvania is being conducted Jan. 24-30, but with Scranton Prep playing at Valley View in boys basketball Jan. 17, Valley View held its event then.

Scranton Prep coach Andrew Kettel founded the local Coaches vs. Cancer efforts and serves as director of Coaches vs. Cancer of northeastern Pennsylvania. One of the first coaches he recruited to assist was then Valley View boys coach Larry Pegula, who was honored by the American Cancer Society at Media Day in November for his years of contributions to the cause.

Pegula served as master of ceremonies.

Kettel was among those who spoke to the crowd in attendance prior to the varsity game.

“Over the past 16 years, what we’ve been able to do locally in District 2 has been admired, copied and talked about on a national level,” Kettel said. “ … Valley View: You’ve been a leader throughout the past 16 years and you should be very proud of yourselves.”

On behalf of Coaches vs. Cancer and the American Cancer Society, Kettel thanked the Valley View community for its efforts, including last year’s $12,683 raised, a number the group was already well on its way to exceeding when the evening started.

Kettel also pointed to a sign in the gym that he said perfectly summed up the evening and the goals of the organization.

“It says: ‘Supporting the fighters, admiring the survivors and honoring the fallen’ and that’s what we’re here to do tonight,” Kettel said.

Valley View superintendent Michael Boccella introduced three children in the community, two of them already district students, who are fighting cancer, to lead the Survivor Celebration Walk that is an annual part of the activities when the school hosts its fundraising game.

During the speeches, Scranton, Dunmore and Scranton Prep were also recognized as being among the 10 schools that raised the most money for the American Cancer Society with their Coaches vs. Cancer events in 2022.

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