Athletes in the Spotlight

In Athletes in the Spotlight, we highlight Villa athletes who have demonstrated an exceptional level of ability and determination in their sport, or who have earned recognition of their efforts from an independent athletic organization.

Athlete Declaration Day 2017
2017 Rowing Team
Athlete Declaration Day 2016
Ani Javardian '16

Athlete Declaration Day 2015
2015 Track Team
2014 Soccer Team
Briana Hocker '17
Alexa Fabbri '15 


Athlete Declaration Day 2017

Congratulations to our student-athletes in the VJM Class of 2017 who will be continuing their athletic careers in college. These young ladies were honored in a ceremony led by VJM Athletic Director Becky Flynn Hensel on April 25, 2017:

  • Murphy Agnew, Harvard University (Soccer)
  • Shannon Coleman, Mount St. Mary's University (Soccer)
  • Sam DelViscio, Pennsylvania State University (Lacrosse)
  • Briana Hocker, Alvernia University (Golf)
  • Casey Kilchrist, La Salle University (Soccer)
  • Maddie Major, Lehigh University (Lacrosse)
  • Marisa Morano, Ursinus College (Basketball)
  • Alexis Morace, Lebanon Valley College (Swimming)
  • Christie Nemceff, Monmouth University (Swimming)
  • Meghan Reguera, Cabrini University (Swimming)
  • Eva Ruppersberger, Arcadia University (Soccer)
  • Danielle Samson, Philadelphia University (Soccer)
  • Katie Schramm, Loyola University of Maryland (Track and Field)
  • Nikki Trzaska, The Ohio State University (Field Hockey)

Best of luck to these wonderful Jems! Keep shining! 


2017 Rowing Team

Villa introduced Rowing to its athletics lineup for the first time this year, and the team did not disappoint! The squads posted strong showings against programs that have been established for decades, even earning a 3rd-place medal in an event at the City Championships! We have high hopes for this amazing group of young rowers as they return to the water in the fall.

 


Athlete Declaration Day 2016

Congratulations to our student-athletes in the VJM Class of 2016 who will be continuing their athletic careers in college. These young ladies were honored in a ceremony led by VJM Athletic Director Becky Flynn Hensel on May 13, 2016 (l to r):

  • Bridget Galen, St. Joseph's University (Soccer)
  • Francesca Bogiatzis, Ursinus College (Basketball)
  • Gina D’Andrea, Stevenson University (Softball)
  • Alyssa Dionisio, Widener University (Soccer)
  • Gretchen Frantz, North Central College (Soccer)
  • Kira Altomari, Chestnut Hill College (Bowling)

Best of luck to these wonderful Jems! Keep shining! 


Ani Javardian '16

Senior athlete Ani Javardian played for Team USA at the Pan-Armenian Games during the Summer of 2015. Ani and her teammates went on to earn the title 2015 Pan-Armenian Women’s Basketball Champions. Here is her story in her own words:

"The Pan Armenian games took place in Armenia over a span of two weeks. Armenians from all over the world gathered to play one another in Olympic sports in our Motherland. My team was very unique because before Armenia, we had not met before, although our chemistry was stronger than every other team. I had the privilege of playing with extremely skilled players that have experience playing at UCLA, Portland State, Princeton, Texas A&M, and USC. As one of the only fluent Armenian speakers on the team, I had to communicate with the Armenian-speaking referees the entire game and translate for my teammates.

"Our first game against Marseille, France, ended with a score of 106-7. I contributed by scoring 19 points. Our second game against Aleppo, Syria, ended with a score of 102-9. I scored 16 points and scored the 96th, 98th, and 100th point. The last game before the playoffs was against Sydney, Australia. The score was 95-12; I was able to score 18 points.

"Men, women, and children would stop me for autographs and photos, since everyone sensed the USA team would win. Winning soon became something that I wanted not only for myself, but also for the young fans who looked up to me. I could hear people cheering for me in Armenian, people I have never met before, but knew me as #13.

"We won our first two playoff games, which were against Armenia and Azerbaijan, by over 30 points. Our championship game was against Antelias, Lebanon. After a neck-and-neck three quarters, USA picked it up with 10 minutes left, getting a 15-point lead. We were shortly awarded our very own gold medals and certificates. Somehow, 10 strangers who were still learning one another’s names on the court during the first game became the 2015 Pan Armenian Women’s Basketball Champions."


Athlete Declaration Day 2015

Congratulations to our student-athletes in the VJM Class of 2015 who will be continuing their athletic careers in college. These young ladies were honored in a ceremony led by VJM Athletic Director Becky Flynn Hensel on May 7, 2015:

  • Alexandra Capozzi, Rosemont College (Softball)
  • Erin Durnin, Duquesne University (Track)
  • Alexa Fabbri, Villanova University (Swimming)
  • Michaela Hollister, Mount St. Mary (Track)
  • Morgan McDonough, Immaculata University (Soccer)
  • Emily Messina, Catholic University (Swimming)
  • Taylor Septer, University of Scranton (Softball)
  • Taylor Stevens, University of Scranton (Soccer)
  • Allie Trzaska, University of Pennsylvania (Soccer)

Best of luck to these wonderful Jems! Keep shining! 


2015 Track Team

Sent five members to States at Pennsylvania State University in March—Michaela Hollister '15 (high jump), Jane Lupica '15 (60m), and Erin Durnin '15, Michaela Hollister '15, Isabella Hill '17, and Kaela Jolibois '18 (4x400 relay). The 4x400 relay squad went on to compete at the 2015 New Balance Nationals Indoor at The Armory in NYC.

Erin Durnin '15
4x400 relay
Q: How did you get involved in track?
Erin: I got involved in track during grade school initially just to stay in shape for club soccer. Then I realized how much I enjoyed the sport and stuck with it.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Erin: My team inspires me most of all. We all work really hard at practice, and they push me to train better and continue to improve my times.

Q: What is your favorite part about track at Villa?
Erin: My favorite part about track at Villa has to be how amazing our talent is for such a small school, as well as the strong bond between all the girls and the coaches.

Q: How did you enjoy your experience at Nationals?
Erin: My experience at Nationals personally was great. I love watching all the extremely talented athletes. The competition made me so excited and honored to have been there with our 4x400 relay.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Erin: My future plan with regard to track and field is that I will continue to run at the collegiate level. I have committed to Duquesne University, and I am so looking forward to the increase in competition.

Michaela Hollister '15
High jump, 4x400 relay
Q: How did you get involved in track?
Michaela: When I was younger, I used to run around the house, and finally my mom put me into CYO track at St. Andrew's. It became a sport that all my family did, so I just stuck with it.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Michaela: My family is my inspiration. They always push me to do my best and to excel in whatever I do. If it weren't for them, I wouldn't be where I am today in track and field.

Q: What is your favorite part about track at Villa?
Michaela: My favorite part about track would definitely be my teammates. Every practice or meet, something fun happens. No matter how hard a workout could be, my teammates help me get through it.

Q: How did you enjoy your experience at Nationals?
Michaela: Nationals was amazing! We ended up getting 20th and running our second fastest time of the season. I am so glad that I was able to go with my team.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Michaela: I am running D1 track at Mount St. Mary University. It has always been a dream of mine to run in college, so I am looking forward to it.

Jane Lupica '15
60m
Q: How did you get involved in track?
Jane: I used to do track camps at Holy Ghost Prep with my siblings every summer; then I joined St. Andrew's CYO track team in the 6th grade and have been running since.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Jane: My family inspires me the most, because all three of my sibllings and I run track. I was lucky enough to be able to run with both my older and younger sisters and have watched my brother excel in track at Bucknell University. We all push each other to do better, along with the incredible support of our parents, who rarely ever miss a chance to watch us run, and have dedicated so much time to helping us improve.

Q: What is your favorite part about track at Villa?
Jane: My favorite part about Villa Track is definitely our team. Past and present, the track team has always been full of incredible girls. We are always finding a way to have fun, while also bringing hard work and success to the track.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Jane: I am not running competitively next year in college, so this will be my last year competing.

Kaela Jolibois '18
4x400 relay
Q: How did you get involved in track?
Kaela: For most of my childhood, I was a soccer player, and I still am, but I soon realized that as I got older and the game got more competitive, I needed to build up more endurance. That's why I joined CYO track in 6th grade, and I have loved it ever since.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Kaela: I receive most of my inspiration from my teammates. On those days when practice is especially hard, and I don't feel like running, I can look at all the other girls on the team who are pushing through, and that motivates me to keep going. Also, I feel like we all push each other to do our best, and that helps make us stronger athletes. We do this and cheer each other on, because we care about the success of our teammates just as much as we do our own.

Q: What is your favorite part about track at Villa?
Kaela: I love the friendships I have made on Villa Track. Coming into this season as a Freshman, this was a new experience for me, and I didn't know what to expect. But all the girls, no matter what grade, were friendly. Everyone on the team is especially close with each other, because of the many hours we spend together at the track meets.

Q: How did you enjoy your experience at Nationals?
Kaela: Going to Nationals was a surreal experience. I began the season hoping to win at least one medal. I had no intentions of making it to Nationals; I didn't even know it was a possibility for myself. Nationals was a bit overwhelming for me, but I ended up having a great time. I am so proud and honored to have been part of an amazing team and to have shared this experience with a great group of girls.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Kaela: My first focus is the spring track season—I have high hopes for the team! Then, I will definitely continue running track throughout the rest of high school and hopefully in college, too.


2014 Soccer Team

Won the 2014 PIAA Class AA Girls Soccer State Championship at Hershey

Murphy Agnew '17
League MVP
Q: How did you get involved in soccer?
Murphy: My dad played soccer all his life, and I knew how much he loved it, so I wanted to try it. When I started playing, I loved it and have played it ever since then.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Murphy: My inspiration is the possibility of playing on the Women's National Team. That is my end goal, and it motivates me to practice and play hard.

Q: What is your favorite part about soccer at Villa?
Murphy: My favorite part is the team. As a Freshman last year, it was great to know upperclassmen and be comfortable around them. My teammates are some of my best friends.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of a State Championship team?
Murphy: It was a great experience, and it means the world to me to be a part of the State Championship team.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Murphy: My future plans are to continue playing and play at the highest level of soccer there is.

Alexa Fabbri '15
League All-Star
Q: How did you get involved in soccer?
Alexa: I got involved with soccer when I was about six years old. My parents signed me up for a kids' league with boys and girls. That's when my love for soccer began.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Alexa: I would say my mom inspires me the most. She is my #1 supporter. She will give up anything to be at any of my games or even scrimmages. She might not be able to criticize me on my soccer skills, but she is always telling me something I can do to better myself for the next game. My mom is all about being the best version of yourself. I hope when I'm older I become half the person she is, because then I will be able to accomplish any task.

Q: What is your favorite part about soccer at Villa?
Alexa: My favorite part about Villa Soccer is the friendships I have built since Freshman year. The bond that the team had just made me want to play 10 times harder for them. When you have strong friendships and chemistry, the soccer part comes easy.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of a State Championship team?
Alexa: Words can't describe what it feels like. Being part of the championship team just means all of the hard work, sweat, double practices during preseason, sprints, and late-night practices paid off. The 2015 Seniors made a deal with Coach Finneyfrock in August, before the preseason started, that we were going to make it to Hershey; thankfully, we lived up to the deal.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Alexa: Unfortunately, the State Championship game was the last soccer game of my career. I couldn't have asked for a better ending. I will be pursuing my swimming career at the collegiate level at Villanova University.

Taylor Stevens '15
League All-Star
Q: How did you get involved in soccer?
Taylor: When I was younger, I was a dancer, gymnast, and figure skater. At about five years old, I went to my dad and asked to play soccer. It was out of nowhere, and I have no idea what made me decide to ask, because my parents did almost every sport except soccer. But I am happy I asked to play. I would not be who I am without soccer.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Taylor: I play soccer for myself. The soccer field is the only place where I can forget about everything and be stress-free. However, my brothers, although younger, inspire me every day. We are a competitive family and always have to score more goals than the other, whether it is my brothers in hockey or me in soccer. They look up to me and cannot wait to watch me play in college. Sports bring my family closer, which is the best inspiration a person can have.

Q: What is your favorite part about soccer at Villa?
Taylor: My favorite part about soccer at Villa is the competitiveness and togetherness of the team. Your spot on the team and on the field is never guaranteed. You have to work hard for it every day, and it is not easy. Winning the spot after all of your hard work is the best reward. Also, we are not only a team, but a family, and there are not many teams that can say that. When you are a part of Villa Soccer, you are a part of something more, a family. You will not get that at any other high school. We do things off the field that other teams do not do, and it is amazing to be a part of that.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of a State Championship team?
Taylor: The feeling is indescribable. Being a part of a State Championship is a memory that I will carry with me forever. This was Villa Soccer's 10th State Championship, and I am confident there will be many more to come.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Taylor: I will be playing D3 soccer at the University of Scranton, where I will be a biology/pre-med major. After college, I plan to go to medical school to become a doctor. Therefore, I will not be playing as much soccer as I would like, but I will definitely continue to play with some of my friends when I can.

Allie Trzaska '15
League All-Star
Q: How did you get involved in soccer?
Allie: My first time playing soccer was 12 years ago! My parents signed me up for the YMS peewee league. I can't thank them enough!

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Allie: My mom. If I am half the woman she is when I grow up, it will be an accomplishment. I would never be where I am today without her. Someone had to drive me to every single one of my soccer games! She has provided me with everything and has always been the best support system. Everything I have accomplished so far is because of her.

Q: What is your favorite part about soccer at Villa?
Allie: The team camaraderie. I honestly believe no other high school team is as close as we are. Specifically, this year we had a great group of 46 girls. We connected with each other this year more than any other. Freshmen through Seniors, we have an unbreakable bond.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of a State Championship team?
Allie: Winning a State Championship can barely be put into words! It's the cherry on top of an incredible season. All four months of our hard work paid off, and we now have the title of the best girls' AA team in the state!

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Allie: Next year, I will continue playing at the University of Pennsylvania.

Casey Kilchrist '17
League All-Star
Q: How did you get involved in soccer?
Casey: My dad played, and my parents decided I should get involved in a sport. After trying basically everything, my parents decided I wasn't half-bad at soccer.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Casey: My parents.

Q: What is your favorite part about soccer at Villa?
Casey: Cheering.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of a State Championship team?
Casey: It feels great because I'll always be known as a part of the 2014 State Championship team/win.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Casey: Going to continue playing in high school/club. Hopefully continuing my career in college.


Briana Hocker '17

Named Athlete of the Week by The Intelligencer for her performance at the PIAA District One Class AA Girls Championship at Gilbertsville Golf Club

Q: How did you get involved in golf?
Briana: At age six, my dad introduced me to the sport of golf. He took me to the driving range, and I fell in love with the sport. Shortly thereafter, I was introduced to the Philly Girls Golf. There I met Cheryl Fox and Jane Cousounis. They encouraged me to continue playing and practicing. Years ago, I worked on my swing with Joe Data. He was the one who taught me how to swing properly. Even though I was young, I began to play in a few tournaments and realized that I wanted to improve my game. While I also play basketball and softball, golf is my favorite. It is also the one sport that I have to practice the most, but I see that all of the practice is finally paying off. My mental game also has improved greatly, on top of my physical game.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Briana: There are many people who inspire me. My favorite golfer, Rory McIlroy, through ups and downs, has shown perseverance. This was an incredible year for him as he rose to the top on the world rankings list. Rory was very serious about golf around age 12 and envisioned himself on the leaderboard. He has been fortunate to excel and has achieved his goals.

Every single one of my coaches (Coach Jane, Coach Pat, Coach Lou, and Coach Terry) has cheered me on. Each of them believes in me and my ability. They offered tips and showed me techniques to help improve my game.

My parents are great motivators and are dedicated to helping me achieve my goals and dreams. They also drive me to practice, the range, and to tournaments. They support every effort of mine and support my decisions. Another family member of mine, Ed Wables, allows me to play with him on the weekends. He always manages to make me laugh every time we're on the course.

Lastly, I strive to be like Isabella Dilisio, a fellow competitor and friend. We played for the Girls Golf at a young age, and today she holds the title of Pennsylvania's number one girl golfer. Each day I make every effort to be at the level she is. Hopefully in the near future, I will be able to shoot in her range, hold a strong mental game and social game, just like Isabella.

Each person helped/helps me (directly and indirectly) grow as an athlete and as a person. Individually they have taught me many valuable lessons. I am thankful that all these people influence my life positively, and help me get to where I am today.

Q: What is your favorite part about golf at Villa?
Briana: I can honestly say that I love everything about Villa Golf! Every practice, match, bus ride, and pep talk leaves me with a great feeling. Despite winning or losing, we always have fun! Each girl contributes to the team in her own way. Coach Terry and Pop-Pop are the foundation of the team. We all work together, and I enjoy every moment of our season. I look forward to the second week of August, when we get back together and meet the new Freshmen who try out. I only wish the season was more like college, when you get to play as a team in both the spring and the fall.

Q: What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Briana: Golf is said to be a life sport. I hope to play on a college level. After college, I will definitely keep playing golf, and, who knows, I may even be able to teach and encourage young girls to play golf. I love golf and wish more girls would play!


Alexa Fabbri '15

Accepted to the USA Swimming 2013-2014 Scholastic All America Team for the second year in a row.

Q: How did you get involved in swimming?
Alexa: I got involved with swimming when I was just five years old. I was at my first swim lesson at the Newtown Athletic and Aquatic Club and fell in love with simply blowing bubbles and being in the water. My parents hated taking me to the pool because they knew it would be a hassle to get me out.

Q: Who or what inspires you most?
Alexa: My sister, Erica, inspires me the most. She was my training partner for the longest time before she left for college. She currently swims at Georgetown and has what it takes to be a Division I athlete. Erica always made practice enjoyable, even if we were in a tremendous amount of pain. I hope I can do as well as she is with balancing schoolwork and swimming at the college level.

Q: What is your favorite part about swimming at Villa?
Alexa: My favorite part about Villa Swimming is spending time with everyone at meets. Competing against other schools is tough, but when you have the teammates that I have, then it makes competing easier.

Q: What does it mean to you to be a part of USA Swimming?
Alexa: USA Swimming is fun and competitive at the same time. I am honored to be a part of a program that allows me to compete against fast swimmers. The cool thing about USA Swimming is that I see my opponents so often that we have become friends.

Q: You're a Senior now. What are your future plans with regard to your sport?
Alexa: My future plans are to continue my swimming career at the collegiate level. I am undecided as to what college I will be attending, but I plan to swim at a Division I college. 

Athletics Office

Becky Flynn Hensel
Athletic Director
215-357-8810 ext. 125
VJMAthletics@vjmhs.org

Marissa Brown
Athletic Scheduling Coordinator
215-357-8810 ext. 198
mbrown@vjmhs.org

Amy Barr
Trainer/Game Day Manager
215-357-8810 ext. 222
abarr@vjmhs.org

Villa Joseph Marie High School

1180 Holland Road, Holland, PA 18966

215-357-8810

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