Evelyn and Mary Claire Fusiler learned of the infamous escape attempts from "The Rock" a.k.a., Alcatraz Prison, when attending Stanford Swim Camp. Being near San Francisco recently, they were inspired to see if they had the skill to complete the famous swim with its strong current and cold water temperatures.
"It was definitely a very nerve-wracking undertaking with an element of danger, but once we got used to the cold then it became a lot less stressful," Mary Claire said. "The biggest challenge was the water temperature, (59 degrees) but luckily we had wetsuits to keep us a bit warmer."
Before attempting the Alcatraz swim, which is approximately 1.6 miles, the farthest they had ever swum was about a mile at City Park when they were training for it. The sisters have been swimming for a total of 12 years on various teams around Austin. This year, they are starting their third season for St. Michael's. Mary Claire swims the 500 FR and the 100 FLY, while Evelyn swims the 200 BR and 100 BR.
They were dropped off in a boat next to Alcatraz around 8:00 a.m. Joined by their Mom, herself a master swimmer, they had good visibility without the typical San Francisco fog. Their family was there to cheer them on in a boat alongside. All three completed the swim in 45 minutes - quite a feat for a swim that can take some athletes up to an hour.
"We reached shore after 1.6 miles in 45 minutes feeling tired but accomplished. Due to COVID-19, there weren't any Alcatraz Sharkfest swims this year, but we were still able to swim in just a group of three with a guide," Mary Claire said.
Anyone listening to recent VYPE volleyball broadcasts will have caught Josh Thar '23 on the mic. More than a few fans commented on his easy delivery and depth of knowledge of the players and the sport during and after the games, describing him as "awesome."
"Volleyball is actually tough for me due to my lack of knowledge," Josh said.
Associate Athletic Director and Head Trainer Kevin Steen learned of Josh's interest in announcing and set him up with Merl Braggard of VYPE to observe his broadcast. VYPE has a program to encourage student participation in sportscasting called VYPE U.
Josh is taking advantage of any opportunity he can to announce sports games, but would prefer to call baseball or football. He recently had the opportunity to call the last 10 minutes of the St. Michael’s vs. Brentwood football game at home and said he would love to do more of that.
A transfer student this year from Dripping Springs, Josh also plays a variety of sports, including baseball, basketball and golf.
"I'm excited to actually have a chance to play multiple sports here because of how competitive Dripping Springs was," Josh said.
Asked whether he is interested in pursuing sports announcing/business in college or as a career, Josh said he doesn’t yet have it all figured out, but he’d definitely like to look into majoring in Sports Broadcasting in college.
Students who may be interested in becoming ambassadors with VYPE U can apply on their website.
"From journalism, broadcasting, photography, esports, and more, VYPE U has a place for all students with vast interests in the Sports Media realm. Our goal with VYPE U is to give students the opportunity to practice, discover, and hone their skills while working around their busy school schedules. Not only does this include connecting students with those already in the field for pointers and advice, but we work closely with our Ambassadors to answer any questions about this field they may have along the way."
Have you thought about playing high school football? Here's an open Invitation to you to come and see what our football program is all about and potentially become a member of our 2020 team.
We have a very exciting group of young men who will lead us this year; many of them are your buddies. If you're interested and want to come give it a try, please contact me via email: email@example.com or call or text me at (972) 365-1692.
A baseline concussion test is necessary before a sports season starts for athletes at any risk of head injuries. A baseline concussion test shows how well a brain is currently functioning and may be useful in diagnosing a concussion after an injury. The test can also be used as a guide to determine when the brain has recovered from a concussion.
St. Michael's Catholic Academy offers baseline concussion testing through ImPACT Applications. A baseline concussion test is required for all incoming student athletes who play contact sports. Tests are not required for tennis, golf, or swim. Due to COVID-19, baseline concussion tests cannot be provided on campus as they have been in the past. ImPACT Applications has created a way for students to take the test at home.
I will create a test code that will be sent to your child's school email address. While the test code is valid for 90 days, the test must be completed by September 7, and will take approximately 40 minutes. The email will be from firstname.lastname@example.org will look like this:
Fall sports practices will begin Tuesday, September 8. All fall athletic contests prior to September 21 will need to be rescheduled or cancelled.
The first official practice for winter sports will be Monday, November 2. All winter athletic contests prior to November 12 will need to be rescheduled or cancelled.
Kevin Steen and I will meet with district leaders to finalize fall and winter district schedules now that the TAPPS calendar has changed. Once we finalize the district schedules, we will send out an update.
REMINDER: Our facilities are closed, and in-person athletic workouts are suspended. All coaching is virtual for the immediate future.
A quick update regarding our summer conditioning workouts and the start of fall workouts.
This next week of July 13-19 we will remain closed with our summer conditioning workouts and facilities. We will be taking this one week at a time.
We will get back to you with updated information after the TAPPS meeting next Thursday,July 16, in which they are supposed to give us some details on what this fall is going to look like for all sports.
Daniel Serna interviewed with FLX ATX (formerly Fanstand ATX) last Friday evening, May 15, at 8:15 p.m. to talk about St. Michael's football and basketball on 104.9 the Horn. It was a live interview, which you may access from this link.
According to broadcaster Snupe Daniel, "One of our most fun interviews of the night! We caught up with St. Michael's dual sport star Daniel Serna ('21) to talk about the culture of TAPPS sports, competing in two major sports at key positions for the Crusaders and staying safe during COVID-19."
In the midst of this pandemic, the Men's Basketball team has been searching for positives and creative ways to improve. Fortunately, many of our players have signed up for a virtually-run 12 week strength and conditioning program created by former Lakers head strength and conditioning coach Dr. Tim DiFrancesco. Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, and Dwight Howard are just a few of the world class basketball players Dr. Tim has worked with. He is widely regarded as one of the top basketball trainers in the world, and we are very lucky to have our players train with him.
We pride ourselves on constantly trying to work harder and smarter than our competitors during the off-season. This program gives us an opportunity to continue to that!
Due to spring sports being cancelled by COVID-19 crisis, the TAPPS Executive Board made a decision that they would not award the following for the 2019-2020 school year: the Henderson Cup, TAPPS Male and Female Athlete of the Year, TAPPS Coach of the Year and TAPPS Spring Sports All District and All State Awards. The Texas High School Lacrosse League voted to not have season honors due to COVID-19 as well.
For the 2019-20 Spring Sports, TAPPS will amend the published standards for qualification of the Academic All State Awards. The award will remain for Junior and Senior students whose cumulative GPA exceeds a 3.5 as required by TAPPS governance.
The Athletic Department congratulates the following individuals on spring sports teams for receiving post-season accolades.
Baseball - Jack Beiter, Alex Cannata, Robert Latkowski and Lachlan Thomas earned Academic All-State Honors. Two seniors will be continuing their baseball career at the collegiate level. Alex Cannata will be playing at Southwestern University and Garrett Urry will be playing at Nicholls State University.
Golf – Luke Barnett, Jake Cuba and Koke Dolce earned Academic All-State Honors.
Men’s Lacrosse – Ian Prince will be playing lacrosse at Concordia University in Wisconsin.
Women’s Lacrosse - Three seniors will be continuing their lacrosse career at the collegiate level: Aaliyah Jones will be playing at Monmouth University. Camille Franklin will be playing at Bryn Mawr College, and Alexcia Zeller will be playing at Presbyterian College.
Tennis –Grant DeRoeck, Peter Holub, Isa Martinez, Grace May, Sophia Rangel-Medina and Nicholas Nichols earned Academic All-State Honors.
Track and Field- Andre Aufieri, Annika Coffman, Ellie Greff, Grant Lawler, Sophia Linn, Thomas McCarthy, Joseph Meyer, Annika Prevost and Kiele Shultz earned Academic All-State Honors. Two seniors will be continuing their track and field career: Jackson Long will be running at Western Colorado University and Julian Stoicoviciu will be throwing javelin at Texas A&M University.
On March 31, Governor Greg Abbott announced that he is extending all Texas school closures through May 4, in response to the escalating COVID-19 pandemic. It also remains to be seen what extracurricular activities, including lacrosse, could resume even if schools were to reopen on time.
Faced with these difficult circumstances, the THSLL Board of Directors has voted to cancel the remainder of the 2020 season. We know that this decision is hugely disappointing to everyone, in particular to our graduating seniors.
We wish there were another way. Please keep safe and healthy over the coming weeks and months.
TAPPS also released a statement Tuesday, March 31, extending the suspension of all activities until May 4. Their plan right now is to still offer state championships for Fine Arts and spring athletic sports if the situation allows. TAPPS released Plan B below:
James Dziedzic, St. Michael’s film instructor and host of the baseball radio show “Let’s Get Two,” interviewed Lifetime Crusader Brendan McGuigan '14 who signed with the Seattle Mariners last August.
"It's been one heck of a journey to get to this point and I’m happy to say that the road keeps going. I’m beyond thankful to the Seattle Mariners organization for the opportunity to pursue a lifelong dream. Cheers to new beginnings," McGuigan said.
Congratulations to senior Alex Cannata for his appearance in the Austin American-Statesman series, "Faces off the Field." Alex answers a host of questions on his baseball career, including why he chose to come to St. Michael's.
"I moved from Lake Travis to St. Michael’s because I liked the smaller class sizes and the ability to have Coach Schiraldi be my baseball coach. He is one of the best baseball minds there is in Austin, and having him as my coach has helped me with my game tremendously."
River Place Golf Club was the site for this week's challenge, and challenging it was. We finished the day in a tie with St. Andrew's for the third place position. The tie was eventually broken by Koke Dolce’s score. His score preserved our streak of finishing in the top three for the fourth tournament in a row. Now we have a well-earned break!
The team as a whole continues to improve. I am proud of how much their understanding of game strategy has evolved.
Our next outing will be March 30 at Grey Rock. The District tournament is the following week, April 6 & 7, at Teravista in Round Rock. Come on out and cheer on the team! Only if you have all your class work finished.
We're excited for all the athletics and upcoming fine arts and academic TAPPS competitions. A big change for our programs is a new system that TAPPS has adopted for student record management, RANK ONE SPORTS, which requires parents to upload information and documents, and provide an electronic signature.
In the past, we have taken care of uploading this information for students to TAPPS administration; however, with this new system, parents will have to manage this procedure for their children.
Students will be ineligible to participate until they comply with this new requirement. We had planned for this coming change for the 2020 season, however, the TAPPS time line moved up. We are sympathetic about the inconvenience this fall deadline may cause.
ALL TAPPS parents are REQUIRED to create an account to be able to access the online forms and will need to use their child's student ID to do so.
Student IDs may be found by going to the student profile and selecting the student Contact Card > General Information:
Ultimately, this will be an annual task for all students participating in any TAPPS activity - whether athletics, academics, or fine arts. For questions, please contact me or Kevin Steen, Associate Athletic Director, at (512) 328-2323, ext. 1830.
On Wednesday, February 26, the St. Michael's Women's Lacrosse team hosted Anderson High School. The Lady Crusaders defeated the Trojans 11-10. Camille Franklin led the Lady Crusaders with 3 goals, Abby Moran, Kaiki Dolce, Elena Meigs, and Isabella Oballo each scored 2 goals. Goalie Aaliyah Jones had 12 saves for the Lady Crusaders.
The Lady Crusaders are back in action as they host Westwood tonight, Thursday, February 26, at 8 p.m.
SMCA Golf competed at the Lago Vista Spring Classic this week! The course was challenging and the weather didn't cooperate, but the Crusaders are still finished strong!
We had two individual standouts with Brace Ryan taking home second place, and Georgia Hernandez placing third!
The men's team of Luke Barnett, Jackson Wiles, Jake Cuba, Koke Dolce, and Jeremy McMahan also took home second place with a 388 total!
Nice work to Luke Barnett for improving by 2 strokes, Koke Dolce by 3 shots, Jeremy McMahan by 9 shots, August Brown dropped 14 shots, and Josiah Sgro 16 strokes.
It's all working up to District, so keep it up, Crusaders!
I want to thank to Sue McMahan and Amy Dolce for their support. They have made sure our team has stayed hydrated and fed during our rounds. Also, thank you to the parents who have come out to support the team!
We are proud to be the school in which our athletes can and do gain exposure to multiple sports in their four years here. This flexibility is a hallmark of our Athletics program and distinguishes us from our competitor schools.
At the same time, we want to do everything possible to keep athletes injury-free; so, we want to take a moment to offer a clarifying statement to guide our players.
To ensure their well-being, students will remain with their current, in-season sport to its end before competing in another sport. That said, it is up to my discretion as Athletic Director, or Kevin Steen as Associate Athletic Director, as to whether or not we will allow exceptions.
Yesterday the St. Michael’s Golf team played It’s first tournament of the 2020 season, at Grey Rock golf course. We made a good go of it, considering the conditions, cold, wet and windy. The team of Luke Bennett, Jake Cuba, Koke Dolce, Jeremy McMahan and Jackson Wile finished 3rd. Our second team of Brace Ryan, August Brown, Quinn Pirtle and Josiah Sgro finished 6th. Individual standouts were Georgia Hernandez, she finished 5th with a score of 99 and Brace Ryan took 1st place with a score of 71. I was very pleased that the team is not satisfied. I expect to see more improvement every week. Also a HUGE THANK YOU TO SUE MCMAHAN AND AMY DOLCE. The St. Michael’s Golf Team Parents for providing snacks and hydration for the team and the coach. That means so much THANK YOU AGAIN!
On Tuesday, February 3, the Lady Crusaders traveled to Hyde Park to take on the Lady Panthers for a chance to clinch the TAPPS 5A District 4 Title. The Lady Crusaders defeated the Lady Panthers 63-32 in their first meeting of the season. The Lady Crusaders were down at half, but came back and held on to a 43-38 victory. With the victory, the Lady Crusaders remain undefeated in district play and clinch the TAPPS 5A District 4 Title, with one more district game left.
After the women clinched district, the Crusaders took on the Panthers for a chance to clinch a playoff berth. The Crusaders defeated the Panthers 59-46 to clinch a playoff berth.
SMCA Basketball teams will be back in action on Friday, February 7, against Brentwood Christian at the Carter Athletic Center. Lady Crusaders tip off at 6:30 p.m. and men at 8 p.m.
The Athletic Department will recognize our five basketball seniors, (two Lady Crusaders and three Crusaders) at 7:45 p.m. after the women's game and before the men's basketball game.
Please join us for SMCA Basketball teams' last home regular season play, and honor seniors Aaliyah Jones, Kathryn Morton, Thomas McCarthy, Hunter Rogers and Major Thurman.
Yesterday was National Signing Day 2020 here at St. Michael's and across the country. An outstanding celebration it was! We want to say GREAT JOB to Kathryn Morton (Wesleyan University) and Jack Hagy (University of South Dakota). We are Crusader proud of these two student-athletes, and their families, teachers and coaches.
We are so excited to celebrate another round of athletes signing college scholarships and committing to playing at the collegiate level. The SMCA Athletic Department invites you to join us next Wednesday, February 5, in the Gloria Delgado Theatre at 12:15 p.m. as we celebrate the athletic signings of Jack Hagy (Football) and Kathryn Morton (Volleyball).
Jack Hagy, a two-year letterman for the SMCA Football team will be signing a National Letter of Intent to continue his football career to the University of South Dakota. Jack earned TAPPS Division II District 3 Second Team All District Honors this year for Defensive Lineman and earned TAPPS Division II District 3 Honorable Mention All District Honors the past two seasons for Offensive Tight End.
Kathryn Morton will be signing her commitment to play college volleyball at Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. Kathryn was a member of the SMCA Volleyball team that won the TAPPS 5A State Volleyball Championship in 2016 and the 2018 TAPPS 5A Volleyball State Runner-Up team. Kathryn was first team all district and first team all state this season.
Please join us as we celebrate these two student athletes on their commitment to continue their athletic careers.
On Tuesday, January 28, the Lady Crusaders traveled to Regents to take on the Lady Knights for a chance to clinch the TAPPS 5A District 4 Title. The Lady Crusaders defeated the Lady Knights 2-1 in their first matchup of the season. The Lady Crusaders scored two goals in the first half to take a 2-0 lead. In the second half, they continued their offensive attack with mutliple shots and scored their third goal to defeat the Lady Knights 3-0. Goals were scored by Cadence Layne, Jessica Mikell and Mackenize Cohn.
With the victory, the Lady Crusaders remain undefeated in district play and clinch the TAPPS 5A District 4 Title, with two district games remaining. The Lady Crusaders will be back in action on Friday, January 31, against Hyde Park on Austin McMeans Field at Crusader Stadium for Senior Night. The SMCA Athletic Department will recognize our three seniors at 6:30 p.m. before the 7 p.m. kickoff.
Please join us for the Lady Crusaders' last home regular season and honor Annika Coffman, Elena Meigs and Jessica Mikell.
On Tuesday, January 28, the Men's and Women's Basketball teams traveled to Brentwood Christian to take on the Bears in a TAPPS 5A District 4 game.
The Lady Crusaders jumped out to an early lead and defeated the Lady Bears 57-42 to improve to 3-0 in district and 17-11 overall.
The Crusaders went into the half with a 5 point lead over the Bears. The Crusaders ended the third quarter with a 11-3 and cruised to a 67-52 victory to improved their district record to 2-1 and 15-12 overall.
The Lady Crusaders and Crusaders are both in action this Friday, January 31, as they host district rival Regents at the Carter Athletic Center. The Lady Crusaders tip off at 6:30 p.m. with the Crusaders playing after at 8 p.m. Please come out and support the SMCA Basketball Teams.
Advanced American Sign Language course students visited Texas School for the Deaf last Friday and met their high school counterparts for an opportunity to use their ASL knowledge and skills. Our students led games, explaining in ASL instructions on how to play. Upon leaving, both groups did not want the time to end as they had become better acquainted at the end, more comfortable in using ASL, and of course, hanging out with other teens.
On Wednesday, January 22, the swim team competed in the TAPPS Central Regional Meet at Josh Davis Natatorium in San Antonio.
In the first event of the swim meet, Lady Crusaders relay team of Mary Claire Fuselier, Gabrielle Bliss, Regan Sims and Lucy Fuselier placed fourth in the women's 200 yard medley relay with a time of 2:10.80. In the women's 50 yard freestyle, Lucy Fuselier placed ninth, while Bliss placed tenth and Sydney Osgood finished 18th. In the girls 100 yard butterfly, Sims finished fourth while Mary Claire Fuselier finished seventh. Evelyn Fuselier placed ninth in the girls 100yd freestyle. The relay team of Regan Sims, Evelyn Fuselier, Melina Ustinov and Lucy Fuselier placed fifth in the 200 yard freestyle relay. Mary Claire Fuselier finished fourth in the100 yard backstroke with a time of 1:19.93. In the 100 yard breaststroke, Bliss placed fourth while Lucy Fuselier placed eleventh. Evelyn Fuselier placed twelfth and Caverlee Dahill finished 18th. In the last event of the meet, the relay team of Sims, Mary Fuselier, Bliss and Evelyn Fuselier placed third in the 400 yard freestyle relay with a time of 4:23.27.
For the Crusaders, Luke Logan placed ninth in the 50 yard freestyle with a time of 25.81 and placed seventh in the 100 yard breaststroke with a time of 1:17.01.
The Swim team will be back in action at the TAPPS Division II State Swim Championship on February 6 at the MISD Natatorium in Mansfield, Texas.
On Friday, January 10, the Men's and Women's Swim Teams competed in their district swim meet at the Texas School for the Deaf. The Men and Women finished third overall in the meet,
For the Lady Crusaders, the relay team of Mary Claire Fuselier, Gabrielle Biss, Regan Sims and Lucy Fuselier placed third in won the 200yd medley relay and the 200yd freestyle relay. In the girls 50yd freestyle event, the Lady Crusaders placed four swimmers in the top 7th, Lucy Fuselier (2nd), Bliss (3rd) Sydney Osgood (5th), and Melina Ustinov (7th). In the 100yd breaststroke, Bliss finished second with Lucy Fuselier and E.Fuselier taking third and fourth. In the 100yd freestyle, E.Fuselier placed third and Ustinov placed seven. Regan Sims placed third in the 100yd butterfly.
For the Crusaders, Luke Logan placed third in the 50yd freestyle and fourth in the 100yd breaststroke.
Crusaders will compete at TAPPS Division II Central Regionals on Wednesday, January 22, at Bill Walker Pools in San Antonio.
Men's and Women's Basketball teams were both in action on Tuesday, January 7. The Lady Crusaders traveled to North Austin to play St. Stephen's Episcopal as the Crusaders hosted St. Dominic Savio at the Carter Athletic Center.
The Lady Crusaders cruised to a 48-25 victory over the Lady Spartans to improve their record 13-10 overall and will be back in action on Friday, January 10, as they host Geneva School of Boerne. Tip-off is at 6:30 p.m.
In the Men's game, the Crusaders erased a ten point deficit outscoring the Eagles 27-12 in the 4th quarter to win 66-61. It was a great come from behind victory for the Crusaders as they improved their overall record to 12-9. The Crusaders have two home games in a row, they play San Antonio TMI tonight at 7 p.m. and Geneva School of Boerne tomorrow at 8 p.m.
Please come out and support the SMCA Basketball teams! If you can't make it to the games on Friday night, you can watch them live on kmacsports.com. Mens JV1 plays at 5:15 p.m. Live coverage starts at 6:15 p.m. for the women's game and 7:50 p.m. for the men's game .
Coach Lee McCormick, a 16-year veteran in the field of strength and conditioning, is the newest member of our football team. Lee has tutored many professional NFL players, boxers, Olympians (track, swimming and diving), and high school athletes. McCormick served as an assistant strength & conditioning coach at the University of Texas at Austin for six years. While at UT, McCormick assisted in the design and implementation of speed development for the football program, and developed strength programs for women's tennis, softball, rowing, golf, cheer, women's track & field, and cross country. Before his time at UT, McCormick was the head strength coach at Indiana State University where he oversaw 18 NCAA Division 1 sports.
On January 2 - 4, the Women's Soccer team traveled to Brenham, Texas to compete in the Brenham Blue Bell Tournament. The Lady Crusaders won their first round game against Carroll High School 4-1, advancing them to the winner's side of the bracket. On Friday, January 3, the Lady Crusaders lost 1-0 to Saginaw High School; even though the Lady Crusaders dominated the game, they could not find the back of the net.
With a 1-1 tournament record, the Lady Crusaders headed into Saturday play against tournament host Brenham High School. The Lady Crusaders won 1-0 to avenge last year's loss to Brenham in this same tournament. The win against the Lady Bears set up a championship match in the Silver division against Magnolia West. The Lady Crusaders won 3-2 to take the Silver division.
Congratulations to the Lady Crusaders on a great tournament and bringing back hardware to campus.
The Lady Crusaders are back in action on Friday, January 17, as they open district play at Hyde Park. Kick-off is slated for 5 p.m.
St. Michael's Catholic Academy is mindful of its mission to prepare the student holistically for leadership, service, and decision making consistent with Catholic values; and admit students of any race, color, or national and/or ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to the school. St. Michael's Catholic Academy does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and/or ethnic origin, age, or gender in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, financial aid and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs. St. Michael's Catholic Academy does not discriminate against students with special needs; a full range of services might not be available.