Spring Sports Wrap 2018

Boys’ varsity tennis battles to the playoffs, track and field sends runners to CIF finals and the Penn Relays, and all the teams experienced growth and fun!
This was a fun spring season with many different types of successes—from experienced athletes making their mark at elite national competitions to rookie players demonstrating commitment and great potential in a new sport.

“The spring sports teams competed fiercely at all levels,” said Athletic Director Pete Fagan.  “Baseball, lacrosse, and tennis all had memorable contests in which our kids came out with important victories over tough rivals. The track team sent numerous athletes onto the CIF playoffs, with Colin Kirkpatrick ’19 winning the Division IV 1600m title. The baseball and lacrosse teams both had key victories over Cate, while the tennis team avenged an early-season loss to beat league champion Nordhoff.”

He added: “A defining moment of Thacher athletics was watching our track boys compete in the Penn Relays. The hard work put forth by these boys showed us all that that kind of commitment to a sport can lead to boundless opportunities. I was so proud to watch and cheer for all our teams this spring. Our seniors have left their mark on Thacher athletics and will be sorely missed next year.”

Go Toads!

Boys Track and Field
As captain, Colin Kirkpatrick ’19 oversaw a particularly successful year for the boys’ track and field team in addition to notching many personal achievements. One of the main highlights of this exciting spring season: the Distance Medley Relay team’s outstanding performance throughout, with Ford Shaper ’19 running the 1200m, Jesse VanNewkirk ’19 running the 400m, Edison Chadwick ’18 on the 800m, and Colin on the 1600m. These four trained hard, stayed focused, and ultimately placed 6th at the Arcadia Invitational and 8th at the highly competitive and elite Penn Relays (with fans at home cheering them on via live stream in Room 14!). These successes ended up placing them 23rd overall in the nation! Additionally, Colin, Ford, and Kyle Sun ’20 qualified for the CIF prelims, where Colin and Ford ran the 1600m and 800m, respectively, and Kyle ran the 300m hurdles. Both Colin and Ford went on to the CIF Finals and Colin ultimately won CIF Division 4 in the 1600m and set the School record with a time of 4:17:25.

Most Valuable Player: Colin Kirkpatrick ’19
The Thacher School Track Cup: Colin Kirkpatrick ’19
David S. Lavender Improvement Award: Ford Shaper ’19
Courage Award: Toby Arculli ’20
Spirit Award: Steven Yoo ’19
Best Distance Runner of the Year (as voted by the league): Colin Kirkpatrick ’19, undefeated in the 1600m and 800m

Girls’ Track and Field
Led by captains Caroline DelVecchio ’19 and Isabel Hosafros ’19, the girls’ track and field team enjoyed a successful season in which the runners worked hard, with most seeing significant improvements in their performances over the course of the season. Excitingly, a number of the runners were given additional opportunities to compete during weekly invitational meets in Los Angeles on weekends, in addition to the league meets. The extra efforts of this team paid off: the Thacher girls sent more athletes to compete at the CIF prelims and finals than any of the other teams in the league! This included Tess Edwards ’19 in the 400m, Annika St. George ’20 in the high jump, and Caroline in both hurdle events. A special shout-out goes to team captain Caroline—in addition to winning All-League Sprinter of the Year, she closed with an undefeated season in the 100m and 300m hurdles, placed 3rd in Division 4 at the CIF Finals in the 100m hurdles and 6th in the 300m hurdles, and broke her own school record in the 100m hurdles with a time of 15:01.

Most Valuable Player: Caroline DelVecchio ’19
The Thacher School Track Cup: Caroline DelVecchio ’19
Courage Award: Tess Edwards ’19
Spirit Award: Barkley Bennett ’20
David S. Lavender Most Improved: Abby Romo ’19

Boys’ Varsity Tennis
It was another great season for the talented boys’ varsity tennis team. Led by senior captains Jeffrey Ding and Connor Callahan, the Toads closed their season third in the league with a 5-4  league record and a 6-4 season record. The highlight of the season was a huge 10-8 home win against league champion Nordhoff; the clinching point was earned by Max Golbère ’19 and John Han ’19, Thacher’s #3 doubles team, when they took out the #1 team from Nordhoff in a tiebreaker. This exciting late-season win, in the eyes of Coach Boyd, “highlighted the growth the team experienced.” All that growth translated into a trip to the playoffs, where the team played a hard-fought match and ultimately lost 12-6 to San Luis Obispo (a tough team with a 19-1 record). Their success was certainly helped by the strong leadership, calm on-court demeanors, enthusiasm and pride, and supportive attitudes brought by many of the players.

Most Valuable Player: Jeffrey Ding ’18
Most Improved Player: John Geyer ’20
Most Valuable Teammate: John Han ’19

Boys JV Tennis
Boys’ JV tennis was a great chance for students who were new to the game to learn the ropes and be supported by more seasoned teammates, who showed fantastic leadership in the way that they played and approached tennis as a competitive and rewarding sport. Captains Rico López ’18, Wade Luzak ’19, and Ian Zhang ’20, each brought their own unique brand of leadership to the team. Throughout the season, the team successfully managed to balance serious focus with light-hearted enjoyment of the game and each other. Of the six matches they played, four were against Cate and two were against Dunn. They defeated Cate in three of the four matches, losing the fourth in a tiebreaker that went to individual games. The boys showed flexibility and positivity as they played with different partners and moved between doubles and singles play, helping them to adapt to a variety of playing environments. All their hard work concluded in a strong 4-2 season record. Coach Popa concluded: “I’m very proud of the boys, especially the leaders of the team, for creating an atmosphere of love and support and, most importantly, joy.”

Most Valuable Player: Ian Zhang ’20
Most Inspirational Player: Rico López ’18 and Wade Luzak ’19
Most Improved Player: Ben Lalani ’20 and Rico López ’18

Girls’ Varsity Lacrosse
Congrats to the girls' varsity lacrosse team on a fun and exciting season this year! Led by senior captains Béa Pierrepont and Olivia Driscoll, the team improved tremendously over the course of the spring and closed with a 5-5 league record. Highlights included a thrilling 13-12 win on the road against San Marcos High School (and the second win at home against the same team a week later), as well as their win at home against Santa Barbara High School, which avenged an early season loss. At the close of their final season of lacrosse at Thacher, Béa finished with an impressive 109 goals in her career, while Olivia closed with 426 saves as a four-year starter in goal.

Most Valuable Player(s): Béa Pierrepont ’18 and Olivia Driscoll ’18
Most Inspirational Player(s): Béa Pierrepont ’18 and Maya Wendel ’19
Most Improved Player(s): Riley Carney ’20 and Grace Zhang ’19

Girls’ JV Lacrosse
Girls’ JV lacrosse, led by captains Kibibi Davis ’18  and Olivia Edmondson ’18, had an impressive season. Considering that 22 out of 33 players participated in their first-ever lacrosse game this season, the team’s 4-4 record represents a stellar accomplishment. Three of the four losses were nail-biters and the outcome was decided only in the last few minutes of each game. These close games demonstrate the improved skills and passion the team showed throughout the season. In addition, the team did a fantastic job of reaching a unique goal: diverse scoring. Fifteen different players scored goals, including one from senior goalie Olivia Edmondson. The team showed spirit, hard work, and sportsmanship and received accolades from fans and referees for a job well done.

Most Valuable Player: Chrissy St. George ’20
Most Improved Player(s): Mya Bolden ’20 and Abbey Alvarado ’20
Team Spirit Award: Olivia Edmondson ’18
Most Inspirational Player: Olivia Edmondson ’18
Coaches’ Award: Evan Perry ’19

Varsity Baseball
Though this was something of a “rebuilding” year for Thacher baseball, the impressive growth and great groundwork set during the course of the season bode well for future seasons out at Bard Field. The team ultimately closed with a 7-9 season record and a 3-7 league record. The two seniors on the team, who were also its stalwart captains, both had very strong seasons: Chris Robinson ’18 hit .382 with six doubles and never struck out once during league play and Elias Ceseña ’18 hit .290, stole 10 bases out of 11 tries, and had a fielding percentage at shortstop of .925. The league took notice of their accomplishments and selected Chris as a First Team All-League player, and Elias as a Second Team All-League player. With these two at the helm, the team was able to beat all rival Ojai schools this season at least once, while also winning 3 of its last 5 league games, demonstrating the growth and improvement the team saw throughout the season. Preston Brailer ’19 and Tyler Vondriska ’21 were also selected to Second Team All-League, while JJ Mazzola ’19 received All-League Honorable Mention. Tyler was also the recipient of the new “Thacher Basher” Award, which goes to the player with the best offensive production and performance, which includes hits, runs batted in, scoring runners from third base, starting an inning by getting on base, moving runners from one base to another, and bunting. Overall, Thacher Baseball looks forward to what could very well promise to be an exciting and successful 2019 season.

Most Valuable Player: Elias Ceseña ’18
Most Inspirational Player: Orrian Arnold ’19
Most Improved Player(s): Mateo Thacher ’20, Justin Wei ’20, Tyler Vondriska ’21 and Teddy Mailer ’21

Boys’ Varsity Lacrosse
The 2018 boys’ varsity lacrosse campaign was a roller-coaster season. The ups and downs showcased both some of the best team lacrosse played at Thacher in the last five years and the heavy impact that unfortunately-timed injuries and illnesses can have on even a strong squad. This year’s team, led by senior captains Adam Marcelo ’18, Henry Hancock ’18, and Thomas Boneysteele ’18, had an incredibly high ceiling, illustrated in convincing wins over Santa Barbara, Viewpoint, and Cate to start the season. At their best, they were a team that could put up big numbers by sharing the ball, pushing transition opportunities, and finishing their shots. When they were stricken by injuries, however, they struggled to maintain the rhythm that characterized them at their best. The boys showed a tremendous amount of resilience in beating Dos Pueblos away from home after having lost to them in double overtime a few weeks earlier at Thacher, as well as in putting together a strong final effort to defeat Brentwood 18-6 after having lost at Cate in a disappointing game the week before.

Most Valuable Player: Roman Bergeron ’19
Most Improved: Jackson Hollins ’20
Unsung Hero: Julian Amaya ’19
“Spirit of Lacrosse” Award: Charlie Kleeger ’19

Boys’ JV Lacrosse
The 2018 boys’ JV lacrosse season was the biggest season they’ve had in the last few years.  The large, well-rounded team included nine freshmen, five sophomores, three juniors, and two seniors. The substantial 10-game season meant that the Toads had many opportunities to practice together as a team and test everything that they had learned and mastered against live competition. Over the course of the season, the boys really came together and learned a lot and they closed the season with a 5-5 season record. Highlights included two great victories against Cate and an end of the season win over Dunn.

Most Valuable Player: Tarek Khattab ’19
Unsung Hero: Duncan Grimes ’21
Most Improved Player: Patrick Lundgren ’21

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