A Page -- Nov. 8, 2010

Walsh Jesuit, St. Ignatius, St. John 

soccer players beaming for the moon 

as well-rounded Student/Athletes

this week; Jesuits claiming three of 

four state semifinalist spots on

Rocky River pitch

 Nov.8, 2010

By Norm Weber

Student/Athlete-Cleveland Editor



ROCKY RIVER -- Some might argue that the two components in the concept “Student/Athlete” are mutually exclusive, but they would be wrong.

Studies have shown that the “dumb jock” stereotype is long passé` and that those individuals and teams who succeed in one, academics or athletics, typically succeed in the other. Society and business are constantly finding that the best leaders are emerging from the pool of individuals who were both good students and good athletes in high school and college  and more often than not the latter from succeeding in a team role, which transfers well into the business world and life..


A great example of this could be found in the Division I  State soccer semifinals tomorrow and Wednesday, both on the pitch in the athletic complex at Rocky River High School. In the boys’ semifinal, undefeated St. Ignatius plays St. John Jesuit tomorrow while in the girls’ semi Strongsville plays Walsh Jesuit one night later.

Count ‘em! That’s three Jesuit schools out of the four in those two semifinal matches. Also that’s three out of the four Jesuit high schools in all of the state. The only Ohio Jesuit high school not include here is St. Xavier. The fact that Strongsville got into that mix is a tribute to that school district being one of the best of the public variety in Greater Cleveland. In addition, Walsh’s boys’ team is also in the semis in Division II

The Jesuits have long played on the mantra: “1) education, 2) education and 3) education.” It was St. Ignatius of Loyola who first developed this philosophy in the 1500s. Ignatius surrounded himself with a plethora of well-educated men to help others find God. He believed that only through education could great things be accomplished.

Hundreds of young men flocked toward him and thus he needed to provide, so he arranged to have schools built for this educational purpose. At the crux of his philosophy on education was respect for the varying capacities of the individual students, and, today that includes athletics..

During the next few centuries, the Jesuits were considered the “Schoolmasters of Europe” with over 1,000 Jesuit institutions dotting the continent.

The fact that St. Ignatius, St. John and Walsh all made the semis is more than just a matter of raw athletic ability. The mind/body dichotomy is often focused on more now than ever with society’s emphasis on nutrition, health, working out, meditation, and thirst for knowledge.

It is no coincidence that when ESPN and COSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America) announced its College Academic All Region teams last week that most of the press releases that crossed my desk top included scores of Student/Athletes that studied and played at local Jesuit schools prior to their collegiate Student/Athletic careers. Among those S/As were Bryan Connelly (St. Ignatius/Carnegie Mellon), Joey Baum (Walsh/Case Western Reserve), Zach Homyk (St. Ignatius of Chicago/Case Reserve), Alex Ferrara (Walsh/Mount Union), and Pat Brennan (Walsh/Baldwin-Wallace).

This is only a small sampling, but the list can go on endlessly. The fact that many S/As from Jesuit highs schools go on to play college athletics and often at Division III schools, which place a premium on academics above athletics, is a testament  to their individual success with their teams in high school (much like the current soccer Warriors, Wildcats and Titans) and the educational paths the Jesuits laid before them during the days in their classrooms.

Ignatius of Loyola built an educational system on the principles of “diversity of perspective” and the “awareness of independence of each man or woman” into the Jesuit philosophy.

The three Jesuit schools qualifying through the regional tourneys and the scores of college S/As (alumni and alumnae of local Jesuit high schools) getting nominated as Academic All Americans (automatic with All-Region/District honors) ironically comes during the same week that Jerry Brown was elected to become California governor again after a 27-year absence.

Brown unduly was once dubbed “Governor Moonbeam” perhaps because he evolved from the radical and rebellious culture of the 1960s. It is this “independence” and “diversity of perspective” that Ignatius of Loyola preached that allowed Brown to cream his opponent in the election race and could also be found on the athletic fields when Jesuit S/As have an intellectual and spiritual advantage by means of the same two principles..

Attorney General and Governor-elect Brown graduated from the St. Ignatius High School in the Bay Area and the Sacred Heart Jesuit Seminary College it fed into, and after a brief stint as a priest, he went to law school on the East Coast to follow in the footsteps of his father, the late Pat Brown (California governor 1959-1967).

Jesuit-educated Jerry Brown

During both Pat Brown’s and Jerry Brown’s first round (1975-83) as governor, California was the No. 1 state in education. Since then it has dropped to a pathetic No. 43.

When I pointed out this fact, one of his campaign workers thanked me for it. I said, “Don’t thank me; thank the Jesuits who educated him and Pat Brown for sending him to Jesuit schools.”

Political extremists often love to promote the idea of “diversity,” but more often than not it is “superficial diversity” as opposed to the kind of “diversity of perspective” and individuality/independence that Ignatius of Loyola advanced so well.

The Moonbeam reference might come from eccentric ideas and muses translated into public speeches, but that is also part of the “diversity of perspective” and “independence” (the later of which could also be applied to his never conceding to Bill Clinton in the 1992 presidential primary). Most of the greatest inventions have come from minds that contemporaries have deemed as borderline loss of mind and senses. In the end, they turned out to be borderline if not outright geniuses for their so-called radical ideas.

It could also explain why Student/Athletes at schools like Walsh, Iggy and St. John simultaneously have high-beamed goals that have them reaching for the moon , and more often than not, getting there as well, the soccer teams this week being a great case in point..

Aurora boys' basketball has speed, 

long shooters, experience, youth

and key transfer from Twinsburg

Nov. 8, 2010

By Norm Weber

Student/Athlete-Cleveland Editor


AURORA – After winning a sectional championship last year before falling in the districts to eventual state qualifier Benedictine, Aurora’s boys’ basketball team is reaching for newer heights this year.

Third-year Greenmen Coach Brian Force has a decent mix of experience and youth, and will be looking to use his team quickness and long –range gunners to improve upon the respectable 13-8 record his troops posted last season.

“We are quick at every position, have a good mix of experience and youth, and the boys are hardworking and dedicated,” said Force. “We will have good depth, especially at the guard position.  We can really shoot the 3 this season.  At any time, we will have 5 players on the floor that can shoot the 3 effectively.”

Regulars/starters returning are Joe Mims (5’10” senior point guard, 4-year varsity letterman, 9 PPG, 4 assists), Trayvon Nash  (5’11”, senior guard, 4 year varsity letterman, 8 PPG, 3 Assists, 3 rebounds per game) , Brandon Walker  (6’5”, junior forward, one varsity letter, 8 PPG, 4 Rebs, 1 blocked shot pg.) and Alex DeLahunta  and (5’8” Junior guard, one varsity letter).


“Our goal is to simply get better every day.  To do that, we talk about maximizing our own abilities and efforts and sacrificing all of that for the good of the group,” said Force. “Our team goals are to win the Chagrin Valley Championship and win a district championship.”

The mix of newcomers  (’09-’09 JVs, varsity scout players, transfers, etc) include Ryan Connolly (6’2” senior forward), Johnny Montello (5’10” junior guard), Patrick Dougherty  (6’3” sophomore forward), Alex Pancake (5’11” senior guard), Tyler Schultz  (5’11” junior guard) and Bruce Alexander (5’11” senior guard and a transfer from Twinsburg).

“We will be as deep as last season, playing at least 9 Student/Athletes each game,” Force said. “Our team has great chemistry and is very hard working.  We feel we will be in contention for a league championship this season.  Our leadership is strong and some of our players have been a part of this process for 3-4 years.”

The Greenmen mainstays have spent a lot of time during the off season, playing in various summer leagues and camps and in various fall activities on their own.

“Our team has made solid gains in our skill level, strength, and conditioning,” said Force.  “We expect our team to compete at a high level in every game.  The talent level and work ethic is the best I have seen in my three years in Aurora.”

One attribute the Greenmen possess as a group is a strong work ethic.

“Our players believe in their ability and know what it will take to compete for a league championship,” said Force. “We have a lot left to improve upon, but our guys are prepared to be successful. Confidence and success are EARNED, and our players have been a part of the process for three years working towards daily improvement.”

The Greenmen’s shortfall has been to finish with confidence.

“This is was what kept us from achieving our personal best last year,” said Force.. “This season, one of our focus points is finishing plays, both offensively and defensively, and finishing games.”

One major change that will take place this year is in the  lineup due to a transfer student Bruce Alexander, who was a two year starter at Twinsburg, as wells as several other significant move ups from the JV team.

“We are more talented, and quicker at every position than we have been in previous seasons,” the coach said  “Brandon Walker, a very promising junior forward will play more significant minutes and we expect him to make a dramatic impact on our team’s success.  He has put together a tremendous off season where he gained a great deal of experience and confidence.

Senior Ryan Connolly, senior forward, will contribute greatly this season due to his heart, hustle, and determination that he brings to the varsity level of competition. Juniors Johnny Montello and Alex DeLahunta expect to play increased roles in our rotation this season as well.  Their skill and toughness will be a very welcome component to our success.”

Other big impact players who have been a part of the varsity team for three years are Trayvon Nash and Joe Mims, both senior guards.

 “Both plan to play crucial roles for us this season,” Force said. “Their leadership and ability to make plays on both ends of the floor will be essential to our success.”

 This group of boys achieves off the court as well.

“The best part of our team is that they are great guys both on and off the floor,” said Force. “Our team has several 4.0 students and many of them are  taking college prep or honors classes.”

Those working with Force this season are Varsity Assistant Coach Chuck Marusic and Junior Varsity Coach Dave Leskovec.

Vikings to close out exhibition season 

against Oho Valley

Nov. 8, 2010

By Greg Murphy

Cleveland State will play its second and final exhibition game of the season when the Vikings host Ohio Valley on Tuesday (Nov. 9) at 7:00 p.m. in the Wolstein Center. CSU began the exhibition season with a 64-27 win over Slippery Rock on Monday (Nov. 3) as three players scored in double figures.

The Vikings welcome back two starters and seven letterwinners from last year's team that won the Horizon League Championship and advanced to the NCAA tournament for the second time in the last three years. Ohio Valley, which went 4-24 last year, is a member of the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and was picked to finish 14th of 15 teams in the league's preseason poll.

PREVIEWING CLEVELAND STATE: Head coach Kate Peterson Abiad finds herself in a bit of a rebuilding mode for the Vikings after leading the team to three straight 19 win seasons, including appearances in the NCAA tournament in 2008 and 2010. With just two starters and three others back who saw significant playing time last season, 











Emma Ryan leads quintet of school 

record holders returning for St. Joe 

swimming team loaded with 

experience and depth

Nov. 8, 2010

By Norm Weber

Student/Athlete-Cleveland Editor


CLEVELAND (WEST PARK) – With five school record holders and seven total multiple letter winners returning, St. Joseph Academy’s swimming and diving team has the most experienced, accomplished, confident and accomplished group it has had in recent years.

The Jaguars are led by one of the top swimmers in the area in junior Emma Ryan. The school record holder in the100-yard butterfly, 100 backstroke, 100 freestyle, 200 individual medley, 200 Medley Relay, 200 Free Relay, and 400 Free Relay (is there anything left?), Ryan was an individual district qualifier and SJA Most Valuable Swimmer.


“Emma is the top contender in the area,” said Jaguars coach Stephanie Markley. “She has the potential to be a state qualifier in 2011.” Ryan us a 2 year letter winner

Complementing Ryan is India Munday, a senior, who is a School Record Holder in 200 Medley Relay, 200 Free Relay, and 400 Free Relay. Munday received the SJA Coaches Award in 2009-10.

“She is one of our top back strokers returning,” said the coach of ht e 3 year letter winner

Senior Jessica Walsh-Frazier is a school record holder in all three relays and a three-year letter winner.

 “Jessica is one of top sprinters on the team,” said Markley.

Other seasoned swimmers returning are three-year letter winner Lindsey Jackowicz and two-year letter winners Laura Kalynchuk and Grace Harter.

The top diver, Kaleigh Macalla, a letter winner as a freshman last year, also brings back experience and athletic talent.

Jackowicz, a senior, is the Jaguars’ top distance swimmer returning and is a 3-year letter winner.

Kalynchuk, a junior, is a 200 Free and 400 Free Relay school record holder, a 2 year letter winner, and also one top sprinters returning.

Harter- a junior, is a 200 Medley Relay Record Holder, 2 year letter winner, and top SJA breast stroker returning.

Other top contributors include juniors Caitlyn Cingle, Dana Walsh and Senior Shannon Richardson

Markley, along with assistant coach Sean Murphy, has a large team with notable depth in strokes and distances. They lost only 3 seniors from the ’09-‘10 team.

The Jaguars broke 7 of 10 school records in 2009-2010 season.

“The whole team showed great improvement in the 2009-2010 season,” Markley said. “We look to improve even more in 2010-2011.”

Ryan is a quality candidate to advance to state in both the 100 butterfly and 100 back stroke.

“We’d like to see state qualifying times but also improve our overall record and beat area competitors,” said Markley. “We believe we could advance 3 relays and a multitude of individuals to the Northeast Ohio District meet.”

Coach Markley

The rather large Jaguar team has better than two dozen girls in  the fold, but better yet show strength  in every event, especially backstroke and butterfly and sprint free.

“With the depth and great returning numbers, this is a year where we hope to turn heads and show our true talents and power in swimming,” Markley said.  “Our expectations are even higher than last year. We hope to win some invitationals and win most of our dual meets, and send record number of swimmers to the Northeast Ohio District Meet.  It will be a great year for SJA swimming. “

As a result of all the returning record holders on relays returning, the Jaguars are having inner-team competition for specific spots on relays during pre-season workouts.

“Many of the girls are finally starting to believe that they can defeat teams who have beaten SJA in the past,” said Markley. “Other teams may underestimate us. The lack of success in the past has led some swimmers to doubt their abilities, but they will be pleasantly surprised in what they can accomplish in meets through the inner competition on the team.”

New meets for SJA this year include the Bay Rocket Relays, Independent School’s Invitational, Canton JV Invitational, and competitors such as Toledo Notre Dame Academy.

Broadview Heights Native, Baldwin-

Wallace College Sophomore Diver 

Julie Pinter OAC Women’s
Swimmer of the Week

By Jeff Miller

BEREA – Baldwin-Wallace College sophomore diving sensation Julie Pinter (Broadview Heights/Brecksville-Broadview Heights) is this week’s Ohio Athletic Conference Female Swimming Athlete of the Week  for her efforts in a dual meet last Saturday, November 6 versus Penn State-Behrend.
Julie Pinter

Pinter, a two-time NCAA Division III All-American competitor and the 2009-10 OAC Diver of the Year, earned her award for capturing first place finishes in both the one-meter optional and one-meter voluntary events.  It marks the second time that she has been selected as the OAC Diver of the Week.  Pinter won the one-meter optional event with a B-W Natatorium pool-record 259.50 points. She won the one-meter voluntary event with 167.95 points.  Pinter currently holds the school-record in the one-meter championship (467.53), three-meter championship (446.92) and the B-W Natatorium record in the one-meter championship (426.40) events.

The Yellow Jacket swimmers and divers are back in action this on Friday, November 12 when they hostTransylvania (Ky.) University in a non-conference dual meet in the B-W Natatorium at 6:00 p.m.  B-W will then travel to Washington, Pennsylvania to face Washington & Jefferson College in a dual meet on Saturday, November 13 at 1:00 p.m.


Nov. 8, 2010

By Nick Minerd

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – The Case Western Reserve University volleyball team has earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Division IIIChampionship Tournament, announced the NCAA earlier this afternoon. The Spartans are one of an unprecedented five University Athletic Association teams to make the 63-team field and will play SUNY-Cortland in the opening round on Friday, November 12 atFrostburg State University (MD).

Spartan Spiker Beth Karpinski from Avon Lake

The Spartans were 24-10 during the regular season and earned the program’s highest UAA Championship finish (fourth) since 2000. Case won 11 consecutive matches in September and played eight top-25 opponents throughout the season.

Magnificat alumna and CWRU's Rachel Gulasey

Amongst the key Spartan victories was an October 17 upset of No. 1-ranked Washington University (MO) during UAA round robin play.



 James Wodicka and Ravenna Native Isaac Dukes Named 

UAA Athletes of the Week


PITTSFORD, NY – Case Western Reserve University's football and wrestling programs each picked up a University Athletic Association Athlete of the Week award winner, announced by the conference office on Monday, November 8. Football senior defensive back James Wodicka (West Lafayette, IN/West Lafayette) earned the UAA Defensive Player of the Week award for the first time in his career, while senior wrestler Issac Dukes (Ravenna, OH/Ravenna) picked up his 11th UAA Wrestler of the Week honor after winning the Messiah College (PA) Invitational on Saturday, November 6.


Wodicka recorded his team-best fifth interception at Case Field on Saturday, Nov. 6 against Washington University (MO). Despite the Spartans' 14-13 setback, Wodicka made seven tackles to go along with an interception and also forced a fumble in the third quarter. A starter in all nine games this season, Wodicka is sixth on the team in tackles (40), has one tackle for loss, a forced fumble, nine passes deflected and four passes broken up.


A three-time UAA All-Academic selection, Wodicka will play in his final game this weekend as the Spartans host rival Carnegie Mellon University(PA) in the 25th annual Academic Bowl on Saturday, November 13 at 2:00 p.m.


Dukes, the defending Division III NCAA national champion in the 149-pound weight class, got off to a quick start as the team opened its 2010-11 season on Saturday, Nov. 6. The senior, who put up a 40-2 overall record last year, won four straight matches as the top-seed to claim the title in the 149-pound weight class at the Messiah College (PA) Invitational. Dukes defeated Elizabethtown's Tye Boyer, the tournament's second-seed, in the championship match. In what has continued to be a dominant run, Dukes has not lost a match since January 30, 2010 at the Wheaton Invitational.































Subpages (1): B Page -- Nov. 8, 2010