Central Regional High School will host its 3rd Annual Coaches vs. Cancer Basketball Showcase this Saturday, an event that has become a personal one for Golden Eagles coach Mike Clemente.

It was at this time last winter that the third year head coach was just starting to feel like himself following five months of intense chemotherapy after being diagnosed with mediastinal non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Clemente used his recovery as motivation to make last year’s basketball showcase a huge success and it was.

After raising some $2,000 for the American Cancer Society with their inaugural event the Central Regional community rallied behind the 33-year old married father of a 2-year old daughter and raised $20,000 to help in the fight against cancer.

This Saturday’s event features an ambitious 7-game schedule starting at 10 a.m. when Donovan Catholic faces Howell. Following that it will be Manasquan taking on Brick and other local teams playing include Toms River North, Central, Lakewood and nationally-ranked Ranney who will face Keansburg at 5:30 p.m.

Tee shirts and other items will be sold at Central on Saturday with proceeds going to Coaches vs Cancer which is a national program that empowers coaches, teams and local communities to make a difference in the fight against cancer and follows the words of the late Jim Valvano, “Don’t give up. Don’t ever give up.”

Congratulations this morning to a couple of quality contributors to sports at the Jersey Shore. Tony Caravella, who built Brick Memorial into a state wrestling power in the 1980s and continues to contribute as an assistant at St. John Vianney will be inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame this fall. It’s a well-deserved honor for one of the true kings of the mat.

Even closer to home is the news that the Shore Sports Network’s Gregg Lerner has been voted New Jersey Sportswriter of the Year for the third time in his career by the National Sports Media Association. The Toms River resident has been part of our Shore Sports Network since last winter and continues to provide outstanding coverage of girl’s basketball and other sports for our website.

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