Saint Viator News

Delivering the latest news from Saint Viator High School.

Category: Saint Viator News (Page 1 of 37)

National Merit Semifinalists Announced

Fecko_Daniel

Daniel Fecko ’20

Saint Viator High School learned Wednesday that two seniors had been named semifinalists by the National Merit Scholarship Program.

Seniors Daniel Fecko and He Bai joined this elite group based on their preliminary SAT scores taken when they were juniors.

They emerged from a pool of 1.5 million juniors from 21,000 high schools who took the PSAT that year, which served as an initial screen of program entrants.

Bai_He

He Bai ’20

Officials with the National Merit Scholarship Program said this year’s semi-finalist pool represents the highest scoring entrants in each state or less than one percent of high school seniors.

These students now will have a chance to advance to the finalist level, and continue in the competition for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered next spring.

National Merit Scholarship officials say 90 percent of semifinalists advance to become finalists. They must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by the high school principal, and earn SAT scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test.

Cross Country Invitational Draws Record Number of Teams

19513-403Saint Viator High School’s cross-country invitational, designed to give young runners a jumpstart on their season, continues to grow.

Now in its fourth year, this year’s invite drew its most teams ever, 19, and more than 450 runners. They ranged in age from fourth through eighth grade, but kindergartners also got in the fun, running the 50-yard dash as well as first through third graders running a 200-meter race.

19513-203Teams included: Frassati Academy in Wauconda, Holy Family Academy in Inverness, Immanuel Lutheran, St. Thomas of Villanova and St. Theresa, all in Palatine; Our Lady of the Wayside and St. James in Arlington Heights; St. Alphonsus in Prospect Heights, St. Benedict Preparatory School, St. Juliana and Queen of All Saints, all in Chicago; St. Raymond and St. Emily in Mount Prospect; St. Francis de Sales in Lake Zurich, St. Gilbert in Grayslake, St. Hubert in Hoffman Estates, St. Mary in Buffalo Grove, St. Patrick in Wadsworth, and St. Paul of the Cross in Park Ridge.

“It’s one of the only high school invitationals that we know about,” says Christine Bremner, race director and enrollment director at Saint Viator. “We think that’s the reason we get schools from a wide geographic area.”

19513-189She adds that young runners get to compete against schools outside their conference, and see Saint Viator’s expansive campus. Members of Saint Viator’s girls’ and boys’ cross country teams helped run the event and led the younger runners through their courses.

Junior varsity boys and girls ran a one-mile course, while varsity runners ran a two-mile course. All racers were clocked by a professional timing company, It’s Race Time, Inc., and were able see their results online.

19513-324“It is such a great feeling watching those kids cross the finish line,” Bremner adds. “I love seeing those exhausted, determined, proud, happy faces crossing the finish line. What a great way to build confidence and self-esteem for the new school year.”

In all, 100 individual awards were handed out, with the top 25 finishers among JV girls, JV boys, varsity girls and varsity boys all receiving medals. The Saint Viator traveling cup went to the top girls’ and boys’ varsity teams, or St. Benedict Prep for girls’ varsity and St. Mary in Buffalo Grove for boys’ varsity. Top placing teams in each division included:

19513-121

Girls JV

1st Place – St. Benedict Prep
2nd Place – Saint James
3rd Place – St. Mary

Boys JV

1st Place – St. Benedict Prep
2nd Place – St. Raymond
3rd Place – Our Lady of the Wayside

Girls Varsity

1st Place – St. Benedict Prep
2nd Place – St. Thomas
3rd Place – Queen of All Saints

Boys Varsity

1st Place – St. Mary
2nd Place – St. Benedict Prep
3rd Place – Queen of All Saints

19513-205

Thank you to our event sponsors, All About Kids Dentistry, DKMO Attorneys, and Castema Technology Services.

Saint Viator Athletics Implements New, Comprehensive System for Concussion Management

IMG_0007 This fall, Saint Viator Athletics is introducing a new concussion management tool called SportsBrain, which provides online education and baseline concussion testing. Not only does this new tool work to ensure concussion awareness among our student-athletes, parents, coaches, and trainers, but it also supports compliance of state laws. 

“We are really excited to bring SportsBrain to Saint Viator,” said Athletic Director Jason Kuffel. “Our goal is to provide the most comprehensive resources and tools for our student-athletes and coaches in an easy-to-use system. Together, we’ll all be working to protect the young men and women in our care, and ensure ongoing assessment, recovery, and education.”

The online service provides more than simply a baseline to assess injuries, it is a complete system for concussion evaluation and documentation. There is also a system to track an student-athlete’s progress toward a safe post-concussion return-to-play and return-to-learn. 

As it is an online system, it can be accessed from home or school, and training is provided for app use including registration, reading reports, and for those recovering from an injury, how to enter symptoms on a daily basis for ongoing monitoring. Everyone who needs to track a player’s progress can now refer to this single, centralized tool for details of an injury and steps toward recovery. 

“This will be a valuable resource for Saint Viator Athletics,” said Kuffel. “It’s all part of a bigger picture of doing everything we can to keep our students safe and healthy.”

Saint Viator Students Help Lead 10th Annual Viatorian Youth Congress

IMG_0604The Viatorian Youth Congress wrapped up Thursday and it was a milestone. This year’s congress marked its 10th anniversary, and Saint Viator High School students and alumni played key roles.

For starters, Mrs. Cathy Abrahamian, a Viatorian associate, brought a delegation of seven current students and another six alumni served as leaders. Br. John Eustice, CSV, and Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, were among the adults involved, while Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, said daily Masses, and he and Fr. Dan Hall, CSV, Provincial, made presentations to the group.

In all, 70 teen delegates and college-aged leaders convened at the Cabrini Retreat Center in Des Plaines. They represented parishes and schools in Arlington Heights, Bourbonnais, Chicago, Kankakee, Las Vegas and Bogotá, Colombia.

Jason Wilhite ’15, served as one of two coordinators, helping to guide leaders and delegates through the prayer sessions, group discussions and other activities that make up the four-day congress.

IMG_0597He attended the youth congress in 2013 and 2014, and he returned last year to address delegates about social justice. He credits his faith-based activism, in part, to his experiences at VYC. Next month, he returns to Saint Viator to serve as a campus minister.

“We hope to challenge delegates,” Jason said at the outset, “to be more engaged in their faith — and to work for a better world.”

The Viatorian Youth Congress originally was conceived to bring together teens from different schools and parishes run by Viatorians, as a way to advance the Viatorian charism.

Now in its 10th year, organizers see the benefits of its faith and leadership development. Its daily activities include keynote presentations, prayer workshops, opportunities to assist in leading liturgy, and small and large group discussions. There’s also a talent show, a Taizé prayer service and confessions.

A highlight takes place on the second day when delegates and their leaders visit the Viatorian Province Center. They break up into groups of three to interview and then present to the crowd a Viatorian associate, brother or priest.

“The VYC helps our young faith leaders realize that they are part of a worldwide family,” Fr. Corey says, “that is changing the world.”

Saint Viator Soccer Team Enjoys a European Trip of a Lifetime

Saint Viator mens and womens soccer players expanded their horizons and explored new vistas this summer. They just returned from a 3-week trip to Europe, which they describe as a ‘trip of a lifetime.’ Both the Varsity and Junior Varsity soccer players were invited to participate in this unique travel opportunity, joined by their coaches and assistant coaches. Such travel opportunities aren’t usually a part of the average high school experience, but they have a long-lasting impact.  

“This trip not only included amazing soccer competition with teams from around the world,” said Athletic Director Jason Kuffel, “but it showed these young student athletes places in the world they might not normally see. They learned about the cultures of Hungary, Spain, and France and had a fantastic experience.” 

In addition to learning about new cultures and countries, the athletes met soccer players from all over the world, navigated the trains in Europe, toured churches and castles, prayed together, tried new foods, and grew as individuals and as teammates. 

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Kids waiting for the opening ceremony

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“Saint Viator soccer players will remember this experience for the rest of their lives,” said Saint Viator parent Beth Zimmerman, “They came back from the trip connected with their teammates and coaches, and are excited for their soccer seasons to begin!” 

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Goodbye Hungary Thanks

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Saint Viator Athletics offers similar opportunities to additional teams, helping create a well-rounded athletic experience. It’s the Viator way – Go Lions!

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Inside basilica

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Saint Viator’s Cross Country Invitational to Be Held August 17

DSC_1111The fourth annual Saint Viator Cross Country Invitational is just around the corner. On August 17, the Saint Viator Traveling Cup Trophy will be awarded, and the competition is already looking fierce. 

In past years, this event has drawn over 500 young students from 20 different partner schools in the surrounding suburbs. The participants run a course that stretches around the Saint Viator campus before returning inside the Boler Center for an awards ceremony. Each runner wears a traditional cross country bib with a number and crosses the finish line in front of friends, parents, and coaches.

Chris Bremner, director of enrollment, is hoping for another successful event this year – with even more students taking part in the competition. According to Bremner, the pre-season invite has been the driving force behind the growing popularity of this event. This year, 20 partner middle schools have already signed on, with approximately 40 students from each school competing. 

DSC_0909Participating schools include: Our Lady of the Wayside and St. James schools in Arlington Heights, St. Mary School in Buffalo Grove, St. Alphonsus School in Prospect Heights, St. Gilbert School in Grayslake, St. Hubert School in Hoffman Estates, St. Emily and St. Raymond schools in Mount Prospect, St. Thomas of Villanova, St. Theresa and Immanuel Lutheran schools in Palatine,,, St. Francis de Sales in Lake Zurich, St. Patrick in Wadsworth, Frassati Academy in Wauconda, Holy Family Academy in Inverness, St. Anne School in Barrington, St. Paul of the Cross School in Park Ridge, and Queen of All Saints. St. Juliana, and St. Benedict schools in Chicago  

Members of the Saint Viator cross country team are looking forward to helping out with this event as a way to give back to their communities and share their knowledge with the junior high runners. Two members will lead each race, carrying the Saint Viator flag, while other students will help encourage runners around the course. 

DSC_0958“We pride ourselves on running a great event that showcases these young student-athletes,” said Patrick Gaeger, assistant director of enrollment and the boys lacrosse coach. “The day is all about having fun and introducing the runners to high school cross country. It’s also a great chance for students to meet fellow athletes and coaches and learn more about Saint Viator.”

With hundreds of students and family members expected this year, sponsorship opportunities are now available for those interested in promoting a business and supporting this community event. There are several levels of sponsorship available, beginning at $100. To learn more about sponsorship opportunities, go to https://www.saintviator.com/elementary-cross-country-invitational or contact Chris Bremner at (224) 625-1256 or cbremner@saintviator.com.

Service & Song Unique Among Summer Camps

Image-1A spirited game of “rock, paper, scissors” opened the 8th annual Service & Song Camp this week at Saint Viator High School, and as advertised it broke down barriers between the nearly 90 students on hand, who ranged from 6th graders through high school students.

Teens divide up into groups and spread out each afternoon to serve at social service agencies across the Northwest suburbs. Each afternoon starts with a reflection on their service and people they impact, as well as a song led by student musicians and choral members.

“Dear God, help us to serve and grow together, meet new people, make new friends and do what you want us to do,” said Matt Goss ’20, who is serving as co-emcee with Faith Kuper ’20.

DSC_0047For the first time, Br. Peter Lamick, CSV, is directing the camp. Though he has participated as an adult leader — he credits his vocation, in part, to the hands-on service experienced at the camp — this is the first year he trained its leaders and organized the camp.

“This week, we’re going to build community by responding and reaching out to people in need in a lot of different ways,” Br. Lamick said at the outset.

First timers at the camp were more than just junior high students. Athan Huelscamp ’20, told his group that this was his first year and he was excited to participate.

“I transferred here after sophomore year,” he told them, “and last year I wasn’t able to do it. I was looking for ways to get involved in more service.”

Image-1 (1)After the opening prayer, Br. Lamick asked each student to reflect on what injustice in the world bothers them the most. They then proceeded to write out those injustices on sheets of paper hanging on the back wall of Querbes Hall. Their answers ranged from hunger, homelessness and poverty, to gun violence and human trafficking.

“The most prevalent answer among all your responses was hunger,” Br. Lamick told the crowd, “and this week we will be doing many things to respond.”

Fr. Corey Brost, CSV, a former teacher and president of Saint Viator, organized the camp, in part to directly involve incoming students into service, and give current students a chance to serve as leaders.

Image-1 (2)Over the course of five afternoons, groups will sort food at area food pantries, collect canned goods in surrounding neighborhoods, make hospice blankets, do light maintenance and yard work at the homes of senior citizens, help at resource centers for the homeless and at another for victims of domestic violence, as well as work in two local gardens — including the Viatorian Community Garden — that raise fresh vegetables for hungry families.

“That’s why so many of you come back each year,” Br. Lamick said to the 90 teens assembled, “you’re living the vision — and putting faith into action.”

Million Dollar Classic: Golf, Friends, and Saint Viator Athletics

Each year, golfers at Saint Viator’s Million Dollar Classic take aim at enhancing the school’s athletic programs and empowering its student athletes. This year, they had a lot to celebrate, with the junior varsity hockey team winning a state championship, the varsity hockey team making an appearance in the final four, the girls’ basketball team winning their first-ever sectional championship, and the boys’ track team accumulating a few IHSA state championship qualifiers.

And that only covers some of the many sports we have to offer here at Saint Viator.

Yes, it was a historic year for Saint Viator athletics, and guests at the 24th annual Million Dollar Classic, taking on the unpredictable weather we had, enthusiastically mingled with the student athletes at the acclaimed Jack Nicklaus-designed course at The Club at Wynstone in North Barrington.

“As a result of your past generous support, we have raised more than $2.5 million dollars to support our athletic programs over the past 23 years. With those donations, we have seen many upgrades within our athletic department such as full-time trainers, world-class strength and conditioning programs, and the addition of indoor scoreboards for the Boler Center. You and hundreds of other donors have made this possible and for that, I can not thank you enough” said Saint Viator President Brian Liedlich. 

The athletes chosen to address the crowd only underscored the outing’s success.

Senior Athan Huelskamp spoke to golfers, just weeks after breaking a 14-year school record in the discus on his second-to-last throw at state. 

Huelskamp described working with Saint Viator’s strength and conditioning coach, Alex Nadolna, in the Murphy Wellness Center — which has benefitted from Million Dollar Classic proceeds — and how they helped him become the athlete he is today.

In addition to a current student athlete speaker, there was also a young alumna speaking at this year’s Million Dollar Classic. Abby Dickey, a graduate from the class of 2010, spoke about her story and how athletics has guided her through life. 

Dickey said, “I played both golf and softball at Saint Viator. I had an awesome experience on both teams, and I learned a lot about myself throughout my time here. Even in high school, being highly involved in sports taught me time management, how to work with different personalities, and how to identify and lean on mentors.” 

Funds raised from this year’s event will continue to support the conditioning initiative and athletic training program. 

As the event wrapped up, awards were presented to the two winning foursomes:

First Place:
Carlson foursome

Runner-up:
Papanicholas foursome

The annual Million Dollar Classic raffle winners were also announced:

Third prize: The Howarth Family

Second prize: The Maye Family

Grand Prize Winner: The Toczylowski Family

Many thanks go out to all who made this year’s Million Dollar Classic a great success!

24th Annual Million Dollar Classic to Celebrate Saint Viator Athletics

1Join us at The Club at Wynstone on Monday, June 24, in North Barrington for Saint Viator High School’s annual Million Dollar Classic. This event raises funds to support Saint Viator athletics and celebrates what it means to be a student-athlete. More than $2.5 million has been raised to benefit the school’s athletic program through the years.

All skill levels are welcomed and encouraged to play on a course known to be “one of the best in Illinois,” according to Golf Digest. In addition to 18 holes of golf, the day-long event includes lunch, dinner, prizes and a raffle for all participants. New this year is a ticket option for a Social Day at the Club, for non-golfers to join in on the festivities.

“The Million Dollar Classic allows the young men and women participating in sports to be champions athletically, academically and spiritually,” said Tom Ramsden, Vice-President of Development at Saint Viator High School. “This is a day when the Saint Viator community can connect over a game of golf with one common goal in mind, to assist the student-athletes within our athletic programs.”

Over 80 percent of Saint Viator students participate in at least one of the 27 sports offered each year. The Million Dollar Classic benefits all athletics programs and, in recent years, has provided funding for a new camera system and digital scoreboards for Mahoney Court. This event allows for further innovation and growth within the walls of Saint Viator High School.

As long-time Saint Viator advocates, the Murphy family has generously gone above and beyond to ensure the event is successful. Dan, JoAnn, Dan ‘04 and Jim ‘08 are the presenting sponsors of this year’s Million Dollar Classic.

Tickets for Million Dollar Classic can be purchased online at www.saintviator.com/mdc.

Guests also have the option of purchasing tickets for the dinner only. Sponsorship opportunities are still available for the event.

Athletic Director Jason Kuffel, and Director of Development, Kristen Daniels, talk Million Dollar Classic on an episode of the school’s podcast series. Listen here: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/saintviatorhs/2019/05/10/2019-million-dollar-classic.

Varsity Softball Hits Back at Cancer

D7s85rvW4AIKZbNThe girls’ softball team had an extra incentive to score runs this year: With every run they scored, the Lady Lions raised more money for a Roselle-based cancer support organization called Phil’s Friends.

At their end of the year banquet, its founder and two-time cancer survivor, Phil Zielke, was on hand to accept their check for $2,254 and share his inspirational story with players and their families.

“For most of us this was the best part of the service project,” says Cecilia Kaiser ’19, co-captain, “because we could see how our hard work would affect others.”

Before the season even opened, Cece and her co-captain, Maggie VanValkenberg ’19, met with Coach Scotillo to discuss weaving in a service project during the season.

D7s85rxW4AAWpvM“Phil’s Friends’ mission hit especially close to home,” Cece says. “I’ve known people who have beaten cancer, and I know how much strength they possess. I also know how difficult it is when they try to go through it alone. Phil’s Friends ensures that no one battles cancer alone.”

Zielke was first diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in 2004 and it returned in 2005. He endured many rounds of chemotherapy and radiation as well as a stem cell transplant before finally beating it. In looking back on his journey, Zielke points to the care packages, encouraging cards, and the outpouring of prayers that helped him make it.

He started the organization to bring hope to other cancer patients, through those same types of tangible efforts. In 2009, Zielke left his teaching career to devote himself full time to the organization. Within months, he opened Phil’s Friends Hope Center in Roselle.

The Lady Lions drew pledges for every run they scored, with the hopes of enabling more cancer patients to received care packages, cards, and prayers.

“On days where we played a tough team and didn’t score any runs, supporting Phil’s Friends was a driving force for us to work harder,” Cece says. “On the day we scored 12 runs, Coach Scotillo said that Phil’s Friends would be happy about our successful day.”

At the end of the season, the players realized they had come together more as a team while working for the charity.

D7s85ryX4AAKiSR“Coach Scotillo has always believed that coaching is about more than just the sport,” Cece added. “Phil’s Friends’ message of hope and overcoming obstacles was a perfect lesson for our team.”

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