Another pair of honorees have been added to the dais at the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association’s 113th annual dinner Friday, Feb. 3rd at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Cherry Hill, N.J. WBA world super featherweight champion Jason Sosa of South Jersey will receive the Native Son award, while the Flyers Wives Fight for Lives organization will be recognized as the Ed Snider Lifetime Distinguished Humanitarian award winner.
The dinner is open to the public and tickets are available here or by calling 267-546-7277.
Camden-born Jason Sosa was a Sterling High senior playing football when two knee injuries sent him in search for another sport. He found it – boxing. Only nine years after he took up the sport, Sosa beat Javier Fortuna, who was 29-0-1 before the bout, to claim the WBA world super featherweight championship this past June. He successfully defended his title against Stephen Smith a few months later.
The Flyers Wives have been battling for worthy causes a lot longer – 40 years, and deeply supported by late Flyers owner Ed Snider, the man whose name is on this award. The charity group was initially inspired by late Flyers defenseman Barry Ashbee’s fight against leukemia. In those forty years, the Flyers Wives Fight for Lives Carnival has raised over $27 million for the fight against cancer and other diseases, becoming one of the oldest and most successful one-day events hosted by a professional sports team.
Other members of the Flyers’ family are set to be honored. The team’s 50th anniversary will be celebrated when several Flyers captains from their history will be saluted. One of those captains, Eric Lindros, will accept the Living Legend award. Flyers defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere, who set several rookie records in 2015-16, will be on hand as the association’s Philadelphia Pro Athlete of the Year.
Hall of Famer Bill Barber and Lou Angotti are among the Flyers captains who will be saluted, and they will sign free autographs after the event. Angotti was the first captain in franchise history.
Villanova University is well represented – head basketball coach Jay Wright will be in attendance to accept Team of the Year honors for his NCAA champion Wildcats. Nova’s Hall of Fame track & field coach Marty Stern will receive a Special Achievement award. Saint Joseph’s Hawks head basketball coach Phil Martelli will also be recognized with the Good Guy award. Another outstanding basketball team, the 1966-67 Philadelphia 76ers, will receive a special achievement award on the 50th anniversary of their title.
Scott Franzke and Larry Andersen, the radio voices of the Phillies, will receive the Bill Campbell Broadcast Award for their outstanding work.
The Inquirer’s Jeff McLane will receive the Stan Hochman award for the year’s best story.