Category Archives: Athletics

Cross Country Belles Celebrate Season’s Good Run, Sophomore’s Conference Championship

The Mount St. Mary Academy Cross Country team completed their season this past Friday, Nov. 2, running a great race at the 6A State Championship Meet at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs. Staley T. ’21 finished seventh overall out of 130 runners, which earned her All State honors and qualified her for the Arkansas vs. Oklahoma All Star Meet on Saturday, Nov. 10, in Rogers.

 

The team ended their regular season by finishing fourth in the 6A-Central Conference Meet on Oct. 22 at Bishop Park in Bryant. Staley finished first place in the 5000 meter run with a time of 19:24.85, making her this year’s conference champion.

 

Coach Rachel McLemore praised the team’s hard work and progress over the course of the season. “Everyone on the team improved their times from the start of the season and made great strides in their competitive running,” she said. “Thanks to the leadership of our captain, Karina B. ’19, everyone approached every practice with a positive attitude and I think you can see the results in the team’s improvements, especially in the two races leading up to a cold and rainy state meet.”

 

Congrats to Coach McLemore and the Cross Country Belles, and good luck to Staley at this weekend’s All Star Meet. (Read more about Staley and her passion for running in this feature story recently published in Arkansas Catholic.)

 

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.

Mount St. Mary Volley Belles Serve up a Strong Season, Bid Farewell to Outgoing Coaches

The Volley Belles recently ended their season, finishing fifth in the 6A-Central Conference. Coached by Lane West and Brendan Britt, a highlight of the year was winning the Silver Division Championship in the Lady Cat Tournament in Conway earlier this month. The team traveled to Bentonville to compete in the Class 6A state volleyball tournament, but experienced a hard-fought loss to Van Buren in four sets. Senior Belles Ava F. and Brooke H. were awarded All Conference honors. Additionally, two seniors have already committed to play in college next fall. Brooke H. plans to join the Lady Bucs at Christian Brothers University in Memphis, Tenn., and Madeline S. has signed with the Eagles of Judson University in Elgin, Ill.

 

This season also represented the last one for Coaches West and Britt. Coach West, who started teaching at MSM in 1995, has helped coach her alma mater for nearly 25 years. Coach Britt has assisted with the Volley Belles since joining Mount’s staff 11 years ago in 2008. Though they’re hanging up their whistles, both will continue teaching at MSM.

 

Congrats to the Belles, and a big thanks to Coaches West and Britt for their years of service to Mount St. Mary Academy’s volleyball program.

 

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.

Hard Work Pays off as Mount St. Mary Senior Signs with Judson University

Although Madeline S. ’19 jokes that it was the school’s “sushi Fridays” that sealed the deal for her, it was really the opportunity to continue playing volleyball while obtaining a degree from a noteworthy architecture program that persuaded her to attend Judson University in Elgin, Ill., next fall. On October 29, Madeline officially shared her commitment to join the Eagles in front of a gathering of family, friends and coaches.

 

Madeline began playing volleyball in the fifth grade and immediately fell in love with the sport. She played for MSM as a freshman, but didn’t make the team the following year. However, Madeline continued working hard through her involvement in club volleyball, challenging herself by playing on a 17 National team before turning 16 years old. Previously a hitter, she also started training as a setter and quickly became very skilled in this new position. Her dedication and perseverance paid off. Madeline earned her spot back with the Volley Belles her senior year, will soon begin her third season with 501 Volley (formerly Fatchmo Volley), and looks forward to playing at the collegiate level at Judson next year.

 

“Volleyball has taught me to work hard for everything, have confidence even when others doubt me, and just strive for everything in life to be at its greatest,” Madeline said. “It taught me that if you work hard enough and want it hard enough, anything is literally possible.”

 

MSM volleyball coach Lane West praised Madeline’s work ethic and acknowledged the contributions she made this season. “You could really tell she had been working hard and improving her skills over the past two years as she made a difference for our team this year. Her attitude and her willingness to do anything asked of her were positive for the Belles.”

 

Julia Fahy, head women’s volleyball coach at Judson, also noted Madeline’s work ethic as well as her energy, volleyball IQ and athleticism as qualities that will make her a great addition to the Eagles program. “We are excited to welcome Madeline into our volleyball family here. She has a bright future, and we can’t wait to see what the Lord has in store for her at Judson.”

 

In addition to her excitement over unlimited sushi on Fridays, Madeline plans to enjoy being close to a large city like Chicago, which has a vibrant beach volleyball scene – a sport in which her passion has grown over the past three years. She’s already been accepted into Judson’s innovative architecture program and looks forward to continuing her academic studies in an environment surrounded by smart, successful peers similar to the one she’s experienced at Mount.

 

“I am so very thankful that I discovered Judson University, in which I can continue working hard in volleyball while obtaining a very good degree in architecture,” Madeline said. “Judson is also a Christian school, and I am excited to be able to grow in my faith, as well.”

 

Mount St. Mary Academy, sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy, develops young women with a moral and intellectual foundation rooted in Catholic tradition. Mercy-minded and college-prepared, our students meet the future with wisdom, compassion and integrity.

Cross Country Runner Signs with Hendrix College

Surrounded by family, coaches and friends, Mount St. Mary senior Rachel McGhee made official her commitment to continue her academic career at Hendrix College and run cross country for the Warriors next year. At the signing event MSM Cross Country Coach Chuck Toomer commented that Rachel’s commitment reflects her Personal Record or highest achievement, as all cross country runners strive for and push toward their own personal bests.

 

Although an injury slowed down Rachel’s senior year records, her hopes for college are to get faster and meet people willing to run a marathon with her. While she doesn’t expect to be the fastest runner on the team, she explains that her greatest strengths lie in the long distance runs.

 

“My favorite distance is the 10K,” Rachel said, preferring it to the shorter 5K and track events. She added, “It’s easier for me to know how hard to push myself because my biggest problem with running is that I always have excess energy at the end.”

 

Part of balancing the energy and workload for Rachel next year will be finding the sweet spot in managing her time between her athletic and academic life. She plans to study law at Hendrix College and says that she is equally excited about all of the academic opportunities the college affords, especially the Study Abroad Programs.

 

“I’m really excited to be able to go to a classroom that’s similar to Mount because they’re small and the professors really care about you,” said Rachel. She admitted that when deciding between Notre Dame and Hendrix, the choice ultimately came down to the level of personal attention she received from the staff, coach and ambassadors at Hendrix, and even the President of the College, who greeted her by name during a tour of the campus.

 

Rachel laughs about her initial hesitation to run cross country in college, adding that the sport she loves is one that is used as a punishment in many other sports, though she came around in the end.

 

“I realized that I really do enjoy cross country and the program,” Rachel said. “Being able to continue running competitively and making new friendships through it was an offer I couldn’t refuse.”

 

 

 


 

 

 

Six-Week Basketball Skills Academy for 4th-8th Graders

Spring Basketball Academy at Mount St. Mary Academy gives players in 4th through 8th grades the opportunity to build a basketball skill foundation and love of the game. Instructors will focus on fundamental basketball skills including dribbling, shooting, passing, defense principles, team and individual competition.

 

Sundays & Mondays, April 9 – May 20
MSM McAuley Center Gym, 5:30-7:00 p.m.

 

Monday, April 9
Sunday, April 15
Monday, April 23
Monday, April 30
Sunday, May 6
Monday, May 14
Sunday, May 20

 

Cost: $125 (6-week session)

 

Download a registration form here.

 

For more information, contact Coach Lauren Ramsey at lramsey@mtstmary.edu.

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

Belles Swim Team Has Strong Showing at State

Competing against some of Arkansas’ best high school swimmers, the Belles finished 11th overall at the 7A/6A Swimming State Championship on Saturday, February 24.

 

Four swimmers from the Belles swim team qualified as a group to compete in the state tournament in the Girls 200 Yard Freestyle Relay and the Girls 400 Yard Freestyle Relay. Evelyn Nick ’18, Kate Goldtrap ’21, Olivia Chambers ’21 and Victoria Chan ’21 finished 10th in the 400 free relay with a time of time of 4:11 and 12th in the 200 free relay with a time of time of 1:54.

 

Freshman Kate Goldtrap finished sixth in the state in the 200 Yard Individual Medley with a time of 2:21. Olivia, Kate and Victoria qualified to swim in individual events in the Girls 200 Yard Freestyle, 500 Yard Freestyle, 100 Yard Breaststroke and the 200 Yard Individual Medley.

 

Congratulations to our Belles!

 


 

 

 

2018 Homecoming and Founders Week Celebrations

Mount St. Mary Academy celebrated Founders Week during the first week of February. The week marks 167 years since the school’s founding Sisters of Mercy opened the school on February 5, 1851, at the request of Arkansas’ first Catholic Bishop.

 

Leading up to Founders Week, the school’s Homecoming basketball game took place at the Catholic High School gymnasium, where the Belles played the Central High School Tigers. MSM basketball team member Lona Ceccherini was crowned 2018 Homecoming Queen as the Mount St. Mary Homecoming Court was announced before the game began.

 

On Tuesday, February 6, the student body gathered in the McAuley Center for the Mount St. Mary Academy Founders Day and Sophomore Pin Mass. As students entered the gymnasium, the Angelus Bell rang out 167 times in honor of the school’s 167-year history. The bell was given to the Sisters by Bishop Andrew Byrne at the school’s first location in downtown Little Rock. As part of the Founders Day Mass, the 10th graders in the Class of 2020 received their Mercy pins, which serve as reminders to the sophomores to live the Mercy values in their everyday lives.

 

Founders Week 2018 ended with a new celebration for parents, alumnae and friends of the school. The first-ever Belles Birthday Bingo was held Friday, February 9, in the McAuley Center gymnasium. Parent volunteers served up grilled hot dogs, a chili bar and birthday cake before the bingo games began. Two fifty/fifty “split the pot” games rewarded two lucky winners, alumnae Debbie Wright Harris ’75 and Marilyn Lenggenhager ’73, and proceeds from the event benefited the Belles Booster Club, which supports student programs and activities at Mount St. Mary.

 

Fore more photos from these events, click the Flickr albums below.

 

Belles Birthday Bingo 2018Founders Day 2018MSM Homecoming 2018

 


 

 

 

Belles seniors share lessons of teamwork

Members of the Belles varsity basketball team recently shared with Arkansas Catholic the highlights and challenges they have experienced as a team and the friendships they have formed after growing up as rivals in the parochial basketball league.

 

 

 

 

This column was first published in the Jan. 20 edition of Arkansas Catholic.

 

 

No ‘I’ in team: Mount seniors’ bond endures adversity

 

Four years ago, Payton Grice, Anne Moellers, Abby Bing­enheimer and Sarah Sagar walked into the Mount St. Mary gym for their first basketball practice.

 

It was summer before freshman year and, with the exception of Bingenheimer and Sagar who grew up in Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in North Little Rock (Marche), none of them wanted anything to do with the other.

 

It’s amazing what off-season workouts can accomplish. Run enough lines, lift enough weights, withstand enough of Coach Lauren Ramsey’s blistering sermons and it changes you. And in the case of this foursome, that bond has been unshakable.

 

For the full article, click here.

 

 

 


 

 

 

MSM student dances in IDO world competition

Christmas came early this year for Mount St. Mary junior Sydney Kellam (center), the Rockettes team manager and former MSM dance team member who was one of 19 dancers picked to be on the first-ever Team USA for a competition known as “the Olympics of dance.”

 

In early December, Sydney traveled with her coach and teammates from the Rock City Dance Center and other states across the country to the International Dance Organization’s World Jazz & Modern Championships in Warsaw, Poland. There they competed against more than 4,000 dancers from 32 nations and 4 continents.

 

Sydney received fifth place for Team USA for her group’s Adult Jazz Dance Formation and Adult Modern Dance Formation routines and sixth in the Adult Division for Small Group Modern.

 

“I loved it. It was a lot of hard work and hours,” Sydney said, explaining that the team practiced six days a week leading up to the competition. She said it was well worth the extra time to hear their country announced as placing fifth and to know they were the first ones in modern and jazz to compete in their division at the IDO World Championship.

 

Sydney described the experience as one she will never forget. “The different styles of dance from all of the countries were so amazing. It was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”

 


 

 

 

Belles’ first D-1 softball recruit signs with Omaha

On November 9, members of the Mount St. Mary softball program joined senior third baseman Susan R. and her family and friends as she completed her commitment to sign a letter of intent to play softball for the “Mavericks” at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She is committed to Omaha on a Division 1 scholarship under the leadership of head coach DJ Sanchez and assistant coaches Wondrasek and Camilla Carrera. Susan is the first Belles softball player to go to the Division I level.

 

Susan has been a starter for the Mount St. Mary Academy varsity softball program for the past four years. As a junior, the MSM third baseman batted .400 (16-40) with four home runs and drove in 24 runs. She led her high school team in homeruns, RBIs, slugging percentage, as well as on-base percentage, and received 7A All-Conference awards for all of her years of play.

 

Susan has played softball for the past 14 years and has played on several select travel teams. She currently plays for Kim and Martin Poole with Vision Fastpitch, a nationally competitive fastpitch softball team; their 18u Gold team was ranked in the nation’s top 30. Throughout Susan’s career she has won several world series championships, numerous state tournaments, and placed in Triple Crown Sports in Boulder, Colorado, Lake Tahoe, and Florida. She has also competed for the past several years at the PGF in Huntington Beach, California and as well as the JO Cup in California.

 

Susan’s decision to pursue her education and softball career at Omaha followed an unofficial visit to the college last year, where she says she fell in love with everything the school had to offer. She said, “I knew it would be the perfect fit. I appreciate all that Coach Sanchez and Wondrasek have given me and I cannot wait to represent them next year.” Susan plans to major in pre-med and push herself in the classroom as well as on the field.

 

Although the future looks bright for Susan on the college level, she is looking forward to her final season with the Belles and says she hopes to make it to the state tournament this year.

 

“MSM softball has been a big part of my life for the past four years, and I am not looking forward to it ending,” Susan shared. “I have grown so close to my teammates here and have created amazing friendships.”

 

She went on to thank all of her coaches, her trainer, and family and friends for always pushing her and encouraging her to be her best and said her hopes for her last year here are “to have fun and make every game count.”

 

Photos from the Fall Signing at https://flic.kr/s/aHsm5SJqww

 


 

 

 

Opening Pep Rally Kicks Off Fall Sports

Mount St. Mary Academy held the Opening Pep Rally on August 30th to kick off fall sports — cross country, volleyball, tennis and golf — and start off the school year with a show of school spirit. Costumes, chants and a class theme for each grade level and a performance by the seniors united the student body as classes competed for the spirit stick at one the biggest pep rally of the year.

 

Freedom Freshmen, Superhero Sophomores, Holly Jolly Juniors, Slam Dunk Seniors, MSM spirit squads, athletic teams and Student Council kept the energy going and started the school year with a “Slam Dunk!”

 

Athletic Team Schedules may be viewed on the MSM School Calendar.

 

More photos at https://flic.kr/s/aHsm3JiQM7

 

 


 

Summer Camps Elevating Expectations at the Mount

Learning at Mount St. Mary Academy doesn’t stop just because it’s summer time! This week at Volleyball Camp our campers learned and developed volleyball skills with our MSM Belles as their guides. Parents, we hope we see you back this fall for one of the Belles volleyball games, where kids with a camp t-shirt or their team’s uniform will get in free!

 

 

 

College Signing: Belle to play basketball for OBU

Another Belle has signed to play basketball at the collegiate level. Kara R. will be playing for the Ouachita Baptist Tigers in the fall. Kara played four years as point guard for the Mounties and Belles. She was a two-year varsity starter and played in the Central Arkansas Showcase game.

 

Kara is the third Mount St. Mary basketball player this spring to commit to continuing her athletic career at the college level. Mary R. signed to continue her academic career and play basketball for Hendrix College on April 18 and Lizzie A. signed with Lyon College on April 25.

 

For photos from all spring signings, please visit  https://flic.kr/s/aHskV5YBxt

 

Congratulations, Kara!

 

 

June Volleyball Camp for 4th through 9th Graders

Girls entering 4th through 9th grades are invited to attend the Mount St. Mary Belles Volleyball Camp. This day camp will provide instruction to develop individual  basic fundamental volleyball skills.

 

WHEN

June 5-7 ,  2017

 

9:00-11:00am → girls entering 4th-6th grades for Fall 2017

1:00-3:00pm → girls entering 7th-9th grades for Fall 2017

 

WHERE

MSM McAuley Center – 3224 Kavanugh Blvd, Little Rock, AR

 

COST

$65.00 includes camp t-shirt*  (*If registered by due date of June 1)

 

WHAT TO BRING/WEAR

You will need to wear a t-shirt,  shorts, knee pads and tennis shoes.  Refreshments will be sold.

 

INSURANCE

Each camper must be covered by a family’s insurance policy.

 

Space is limited! To register for camp, download the registration form and return by June 1 with cash or check made out to MSM.

 

Belles Basketball Team Competes at State Tournament

Congratulations to our Mount St. Mary Basketball Belles for an awesome season. The Belles won four conference games this season and competed at the State Tournament in Van Buren this week. This season marks the first conference win for the Belles since 2012-2013. We are proud of all these young women, Coach Ramsey, and Athletic Trainer Mr. Stotts. #GoBelles

MSM Basketball Academy for grades 4-8

Spring Basketball Academy at Mount St. Mary Academy gives players in 4th through 8th grades the opportunity to build a basketball skill foundation and love of the game. Instructors will focus on fundamental basketball skills including dribbling, shooting, passing, defense principles, team and individual competition.

 

Sunday & Wednesday, March 29 – May 17*
MSM McAuley Center Gym

 

Grades 4, 5 & 6:   5:30-7:00 p.m.

Grades 7 & 8:   7:00-8:30 p.m.

*will not meet on Sunday, April 16 (Easter) or Wednesday, May 10

 

Cost: $250 (8 week session)

Each player will receive a t-shirt and individual instruction.

 

Download a registration form here.

 

For more information, contact Coach Lauren Ramsey at lramsey@mtstmary.edu.

 

 

 

 

 

SPIRIT BELLES CAMP for girls in grades K-6

Come learn a routine and perform at a Mount St. Mary Varsity Basketball Game!  At Mount St. Mary Academy’s Spirit Belles Camp, girls in kindergarten through 6th grades gain experience in school spirit from the Belles spirit squads.

 

 

Monday, February 20

3:00 – 5:00 p.m., MSM McAuley Center (Gym)
Performances:
K – 2nd, Tues., Feb. 21, MSM Gym, 5:15 p.m. (between JV and Varsity games)
3rd – 6th, Tues., Feb. 21, MSM Gym, 6:00 p.m. (halftime of Varsity game)

 

Cost: $20.00

*T-shirts will not be given out this year. MSM merchandise will be on sale at the camp and performance game.

 

 

Deadline to Register: Friday, February 17th

Download the Kid Camp 2017 Registration Form here.

 

Questions? Email Carrie Burkhead at cburkhead@mtstmary.edu

 

Basketball Skills Academy

Grades 3, 4 & 5

 

Build confidence, skills and love of the game at this Fall Basketball Skills Academy for 3rd, 4th & 5th graders. Instructors will focus on fundamental skills including dribbling, passing, shooting, defense principles and team and individual competition.

 

Fall Basketball Skills Academy is held in the McAuley Center Gymnasium.

November 13, 3:30-5:00 p.m.

*November 20, 1:30-3:30 p.m. (time change for holiday break)

December 4, 3:30-5:00 p.m.

December 11, 3:30-5:00 p.m.

December 18, 3:30-5:00 p.m.

 

$40/participant (includes t-shirt and free admission to MSM home basketball games when t-shirt is worn)

Space is limited. Download the registration form and return to Mount St. Mary Academy. 
(3224 Kavanaugh Blvd., Little Rock, Arkansas 72205)

 

For more information, contact Coach Lauren Ramsey

(501-664-8006 or lramsey@mtstmary.edu)

 

 

 

Pink Out game brings important win for VolleyBelles

The Belles delivered a mighty victory against Fort Smith Northside at the Pink Out volleyball game on October 4. In front of a crowd of parents, classmates and friends decked out in pink to support breast cancer awareness, the varsity team battled it out to a fifth-set win that upset Northside’s four-way tie for first in the 7A Conference. Fort Smith Southside lost on Tuesday as well, so the Belles are set to play the two remaining contenders, North Little Rock and Conway, on October 6 and October 13 at home.