See also: Athletics
St. Rita offers 15 sports, many of which have three levels (Freshmen, Sophomore/JV, Varsity) and we encourage multiple-sport athletes. All sports (with the exception of golf and hockey) participate on our 37-acre campus, with no need to practice at outside venues. We enjoy a proud tradition of athletics and are a consistent contender in the Chicago Catholic League, Regional, Sectional, and IHSA state divisions in all sports. During the 2013-14 school year, St. Rita became the second school in over 100 years of Chicago Catholic League athletics to capture the league titles for varsity football, basketball, and baseball in the same school year.
We are proud of our Tony Lawless Award Winners, which is the top honor given to a senior in the Chicago Catholic League. Recently, Ritamen given this prestigious award include: Jake Shepski (2014, baseball), Dominique Matthews (2014, basketball), Joe Lopez (2014, lacrosse), Nick Goldsmith (2014, soccer), Treston Forbes (2014, track-and-field), Charles Matthews (2015, basketball), Marty Bechina (2015, baseball), Jake Silzer (2016, wrestling) and Austin O'Connor (2017, wrestling). Also, Todd Kuska '90 (football), Jim Juchcinski '97 (lacrosse), Gary DeCesare (basketball), Mike Zunica (baseball), Brian Hagen '04 (volleyball) and Dan Manzella '03 (wrestling) have all won the Lawless Coach of the Year Award in the last three seasons.
During the last two school years, St. Rita has had many notable athletic accomplishments, including:
Eight varsity IHSA Regional Championships:
Basketball (2017 & 2018)
Baseball (2017 & 2018)
Volleyball (2017 & 2018)
Varsity track-and-Field Sectional Championship (2017)
Varsity track-and-Field 4 x 100 meter relay team placed 8th overall at the IHSA state meet (2017)
Varsity lacrosse State Quarter-Finalist appearances (2017 & 2018)
Varsity hockey Kennedy Cup Semi-Final appearances (2017 & 2018)
Varsity wrestling team 3rd Place overall at the IHSA Class 2A State Meet (2018)
Varsity volleyball team IHSA Elite 8 finalist and Sectional Championship (2018)
Varsity football Class 7A quarter-finalist (2018)
Varsity baseball team Steve Bajenski Memorial Tournament Champions (2017)
Varsity baseball IHSBCA Summer State Tournament Champions (2017)
44 seniors (out of 254) who signed national letters-of-intent to continue their athletic and academic careers in college.
Austin O'Connor '17 winning his 4th straight IHSA Wrestling State Championship (2017)
Tommy Russell '18 (3rd Place) and Jake Viloria '21 (3rd Place) IHSA Wrestling Individual Tournament State Placers (2018)
Theo Phipps '17 (8th Place) IHSA State Track-and-Field Finalist High Hurdles event
Ritamen often go on to participate in athletics at the collegiate and professional level upon graduation from St. Rita. Since the 2014-15 school year, 12 seniors have signed national letters-of-intent to play college basketball, 33 seniors have signed on to play football at the collegiate level, 49 seniors signed for college baseball and many others have continued their playing and academic careers in track-and-field, lacrosse, wrestling, volleyball, hockey, and other sports. In fact, as of the beginning of the 2018-19 academic year, over 110 St. Rita alumni are currently playing at the collegiate level in football, basketball, baseball, wrestling, lacrosse, track-and-field, volleyball, hockey, soccer, cross country, and more. 34 of those alumni are participating in athletics at the Division One level.
St. Rita alumni currently playing at the collegiate level, include football players Chris Childers '18 (Indiana State), Louis Cox '18 (Davidson), Marc Mondesir '17 (Illinois), Jake Stover '17 (Illinois), Sean Coghlan '17 (Illinois), Tim Zaleski '17 (Wyoming), Thomas Stacker Jr., '16 (South Dakota State), Drew Walega '16 (Eastern Illinois), Brandon Williams '16 (Arkansas State), Tom Rehfeld '15 (Western Illinois), Brandon Gaston '15 (Western Illinois), Tom Schofield '15 (Valparaiso), Terrance Roberts '15 (Valparaiso), C.J. Weydeman '15 (Western Illinois), Lamar Dawson '13 (Utah State) and others.
Current basketball players include: Chris Williams '16 (Central Connecticut), Charles Matthews '15 (Michigan), Kain Harris '15 (Kent State), Brandon McRoy '15 (Concordia College), Armani Chaney '15 (Tennessee State), Myles Carter '15 (Seattle) Vic Law '14 (Northwestern), Dominique Matthews '14 (UIC), and others.
Ritamen playing college baseball include: Steve Washilewski '17 (Kansas), Mateo Zunica '16 (Kansas), Dan Gleaves '16 (Michigan State), Dominic Sarro '16 (Villanova), Marty Bechina '15 (Michigan State), Jake Shepski '14 (Xavier), and others.
Other student-athletes include: Austin O'Connor '17 (wrestling, North Carolina), Theo Phipps '17 (track, Southern Illinois), Jake Silzer '16 (wrestling, Illinois), Tyrique Thomas '16 (track, Concordia College), Eric Walker '15 (track, Minnesota), Tim McCarthy '15 (wrestling, Illinois), Austin Tiernan '15 (lacrosse, Xavier University), Eric Houlihan '15 (lacrosse, Xavier University), Keith Burchette '13 (hockey, UMass-Lowell) and many, many more.
Since 2011, there have been 15 St. Rita graduates to play (or currently play) professionally in the National Football League, Major League/Minor League Baseball, and the Euro Basketball League including Mike Kafka '05 (Northwestern, quarterback), Ryan Donahue '06 (Iowa, punter), Matt Conrath '07 (Virginia, defensive line), Darius Fleming '08 (Notre Dame, linebacker, Super Bowl XLIX champion), Bruce Gaston '10 (Purdue, defensive line, Detroit Lions), Kenny Golladay '12 (Northern Illinois, wide receiver, Detroit Lions), and Pat O'Connor '12 (Eastern Michigan, defensive line, Tampa Bay Buccaneers). Mark Payton '10 (Texas) is a member of the New York Yankees AAA-minor league affiliate, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders , Anthony Ray '13 is with the St. Louis Cardinals organization, Joe Filomeno '11 (Louisville) is a member of the Texas Rangers AA-minor league affiliate, the Frisco RoughRiders, and Zack Soria '12 (Florida International) is a member of the Atlanta Braves minor league affiliate, the Danville Braves. In 2018, Mike Costanzo '14 (Austin Peay) was drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays and Nate Soria '14 (Xavier) signed a minor league contract, also with the Tampa Bay Rays. Tony Zych '08 (Louisville) pitched for the Seattle Mariners as recently as 2017, and is currently on the disabled list.
St. Rita athletics, however, will never come before a student's academics. Every Wednesday, grade checks are done for all student-athletes. If a student is not academically-eligible, he will not participate in that weeks' games and practices. A student is also expected to maintain good standing in the school across the Campus Ministry, Student Activities, and Discipline Offices.