Frank Pischera

Frank Pischera

Frank Pischera

Frank Sandy Pischera was an outstanding athlete in a variety of sports. Pischera was born in Jamestown on October 17, 1923 and lived in this area for the most part until 1974.

His athletic career started at Washington Junior High School (1937-1940) where he performed on the football and basketball squads who won three straight City League crowns. He also ran track and in his final season of 1940 was recognized as the city's finest all-around performer.

Among his teammates on the basketball squad was Lyle Parkhurst, one of the original 10 inductees of the Hall of Fame back in 1982. Pischera went to Jamestown High School where he earned letters in basketball, football and track from 1940-1943.

Nicknamed "Bisky," Pischera was the first at the school to initiate the one-hand push shot for both field goals and free throws and made the varsity as a sophomore. He averaged 14 points for the late coach Rolland Taft one year en route to Lake Shore League First Team honors.

His talents from the guard position helped lead the Red & Green to back-to-back Lake Shore League titles. Prior to coming to JHS, one of the Washington highlights was an overtime win over the Jamestown Reserves as Pischera scored 17 points and the winning basket. This was the only junior high club to ever whip the Jamestown Reserves.

In football, he was stationed at center and linebacker with his senior campaign (1942) seeing the Red Raiders record a 6-1-1 slate for departed Coach Dent Moon. His final game against Erie Academy saw him just miss a drop-kick field goal but later in the contest it was a teammate Joe Sanfilippo, who had a fabulous coaching career at Salamanca and Jamestown, who booted through a field goal for a 10-7 victory.

The spring season saw Pischera toss the shotput and discus.

After graduating in 1943, Pischera enlisted in the United States Navy and played football, basketball and softball at the North Carolina Naval Base. He was a pitcher-centerfielder on the softball team, which won the East Coast Navy championship. The football team was also untarnished four years in a row.

Frank Pischera

Pischera bowled the first 700 series in five years at the Bowling Lanes in Orlando. Also, he competed in the Navy finals at Charlestown, South Carolina, after winning the qualifier at Key West, Florida.

Pischera was a guard on the highly-touted Jamestown Vikings' semi-pro basketball team for three City League championship seasons (1946-1948). The Vikings won a City record 27 straight games before losing by a point to the Gowanda Legion and also scored another record 44 points in a single stanza. Some of the other teams they scheduled were the original Harlem Globetrotters, the House of David, the Cleveland Browns and the New York Americans.

During World War II, he served as a minesweeper in the Pacific Theatre off the coast of Japan aboard the U.S.S. Ruddy (AM380). He later was recalled to active duty during the Korean conflict.

Pischera played semi-pro football with the Jamestown Legion and eventually was the line coach for the semi-pro Jamestown Dukes.

He was an assistant golf pro to Ivar Johnson at Moon Brook Country Club in 1949 and many years later shot a hole-in-one at Winter Pines in Florida. From 1958-1969, he was chairman for the annual Jamestown area Sportsman's Cafe Toumament.

Among his golf accomplishments was capturing the Navy Tournament at Disney World in Orlando, Fla.

Pischer was superb in bowling, winning the National Tournament two straight years in competition at Jamestown and Baltimore, thus qualifying him for the Hawaiian Bowl-Around National Pin Tournament where he placed fifth at the Stardust Lanes.

He competed in the Satellite Bowl Classic and had highs of 289-714. He averaged 194 per game and was on a championship team comprised of Sam Munella, Moody Garfield, Piney Johnson and Hy Williams.

Frank Pischera

Frank "Bisky" Pischera (right) and Vince Joy Sr. of the Jamestown Vikings basketball team
playing against The All-American Redheads at Jamestown High in the late 1940s. Bisky was a
star cager for the JHS Red Raiders earlier in the '40s and has been credited as the first player
in JHS history to use a one-handed push shot rather than the preferred two-handed set shot.

Pischera bowled the first 700 series in five years at the Bowling Lanes in Orlando. Also, he competed in the Navy finals at Charlestown, South Carolina, after winning the qualifier at Key West, Florida.

He was the horseshoe champion at the Naval Center in Orlando for two straight years and earned 19 medals, including 11 gold, in the Senior Olympics at Sanford, Fla. He received a Navy Commendation letter and was on the front page of Navy Recruiter Magazine with a picture of his medals won over a three-year span.

While with the Navy in Daytona Beach, Florida, he volunteered to repair and paint wheelchairs for disabled persons. He organized the Rolland Taft Memorial Fund in Jamestown.

Pischera received such recognition from the Navy as a Navy Achievement Medal, and the Silver Wreath Award plus a Certificate of Appreciation for his accomplishments in the 1982 Senior Olympics when he copped six medals, including a gold medal on a football throw, in Orlando.

He retired from the Navy after 20 years of service and remained active in hunting, fishing, bowling, softball and had an eight handicap in golf at the time of his induction.

Frank Pischera was inducted into the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame in 1992. He died in 2005.

1942 JHS football

The 1942 Jamestown High School football team included Frank Pischera, holding the ball in the first row.

Frank Pischera daughters

Saralee Buck (left) and Angela McIntyre, daughters of Frank
Pischera, visited the CSHOF in August 2016.

Frank Pischera daughters

Judy Slevin (left) and Saralee Buck, daughters of Frank
Pischera, on a July 2017 visit to the CSHOF.

Join the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame

A membership program is available to persons who are interested in preserving the history of sports in Chautauqua County and honoring the outstanding individuals who have created our cherished sports memories.

In addition to helping the CSHoF carry out its twin missions of maintaining a hall of fame and exhibit hall, members will receive several value-added benefits for their membership fee.

To join, please contact Russ Ecklund at
716-484-7684 or send an e-mail to


Inductees are honored at the hall in Jamestown, NY.


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Hall of Fame
Sue BastedoSue Golen Bastedo
Lou DeSantisLou DeSantis
Marty HainesMarty Haines
Katherine LinderKatherine Linder
Jim MeeJim Mee
Frank PischeraFrank Pischera
Harry RisselHarry Rissel



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