Frank “Boogie” Nicola
- Post by: mcalibrary
- January 3, 2024
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Kulpmont High School’s period from 1937 through 1951 saw 15 consecutive years without a losing season. Four of those seasons, the Wildcats went undefeated – 1938, 1944, 1945 and 1951. Frank Nicola played on three of those teams from 1942 to 1944 and served as captain of the 1944 squad, which went 11-0 under head coach Mike Terry. During his three years with Kulpmont High, Frank’s teams won 22 games while only losing 5 with 5 ties. So dominant were the defenses on those teams, that 18 games were won via shutout – 8 of those during the 44 campaign. In only 5 of those 32 games did teams score more than one touchdown. One of their leaders at linebacker was Frank Nicola. Frank was responsible for eight interceptions during his career – one of those a 65 yard touchdown vs. Mount Carmel Catholic in 1944. Coach Mike Terry once said that “I coach them all week and now (game time) they are in Frank’s hands”. So important was he to have on the field that in 1943, he was only off the field for one minute the entire season.
Although he had scholarship offers from Penn State and Villanova, Frank was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1945. Frank was named to the All-Regiment Team at Fort Bragg as a basketball player. After his service obligation, where he served as a tank commander, Frank played professionally with the Tri-Boro Eagles for on year and with the Anthracite Maroons for eight years until the team folded.
Frank also played basketball at Kulpmont High, winning the Keystone League Championship in 1943. He was named an all star when playing for the American Legion Team and also played with the Kulpmont AC Basketball Team. Frank served for eight years as a member of the Kulpmont Borough Council and was its president for two years. Frank then worked for 20 years as an investigator for the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue. Boogie continues to be a local sports enthusiast while currently living in Shamokin.