John “Jake” Wojcik

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  • January 12, 2024
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Championships ultimately are what we are all seeking as athletes or coaches. They are what truly define our legacy and our credibility as athletes. Jake Wojcik won 20 championships during his career as a player and coach in basketball, football, baseball and softball. His first championship came with the St Casmir’s 8th grade basketball team in 1963. His next was on a much bigger stage with Mount Carmel Area as the starting second baseman on the 1965 North Schuylkill League Championship team. That team, led by stars Bolick, Bush, Doviak, Delaney, Bartosic, Shannon, Fracalossi, Zarlinski, and Wojcik, would avenge their only loss of the season in a 4-3 win over Shenandoah to win the crown with a 13-2 overall record. They would also be a part of the 200th win in MCA baseball history.

Jake also played varsity basketball for three years at MCA and was an integral part of back to back winning seasons in 66 and 67 going 12-9 and 13-9. He also played defensive back for one year for Coach Jazz Diminick’s football team in 1966, a terrific 10-1 team with its only loss to Shikellamy by a 26-19 score.

Following graduation, Jake played softball, hardball, and basketball in various adult leagues in the area. His most successful stint was with the Marion Heights Politicals, a team that won three consecutive championships in 1971,72, and 73. It was at that time that Jake was featured in the box scores on ESPN when they did a story on Peewee Kirkland, who at the time was in the Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary and had been the best basketball player to come out of NYC. Kirkland was always the leading scorer in the league; however Jake’s team upset Kirkland’s team in the championship game in 1972. The feature ran again on ESPN in 2012.

Wojick also played in 5 State Class A Fast pitch Softball tournaments with both B & E and St. Francis Home Association. During that time, Jake had an offer to try out for the Reading Rising Sun, Semi-professional fast pitch softball team, as a catcher for the World’s Greatest Softball Pitcher, Ty Stofflet. An injury to his shoulder prevented him from competing for the team in 1977.

Some of Jake’s other championships including 4 with B & E in 1975, 76, 78, and 79, and 3 with Shuda Cafe in 1972, 1974 and a perfect 33-0 season in 1973. He also won three others with St, Francis in 1982-1984.

Jake also contributed his time as a coach with the Moose Little League team in 1989 and 1990, leading them to the World Series Championship. He also led the Mount Carmel Jets A Division team to an undefeated season and playoff championship in 1992.

Jake also coached the Shamokin Indians Girls softball team from 1999-2007. During that time, he led the Indians to their first District playoff game in 19 years and was named the News Item Coach of the Year in 2005. He finished his coaching career, coming back home to the Mount Carmel Area girls Softball program from 2008 to 2011.

Categories: 2014 Hall of Fame