October 13th, 2011

Elem. Excellence: St. Mary Of The Knobs

Sarah Newell

CSN Staff Writer

Elem. Excellence: St. Mary Of The Knobs
photo courtesy of St. Mary of the Knobs

Growing school celebrates 10th anniversary

The following feature is a part of a weekly series called "Elementary Excellence" - a set of profiles that will spotlight Louisville area Catholic elementary schools and its athletic programs, teams, traditions and excellence in all aspects of sports. Do you want your school to be featured? Send us your recommendation to editor@catholicsportsnet.com.

If you ask the Hawks’ Athletic Director Candace Shireman, what attracts people to St. Mary of the Knobs, she can give you a few reasons.

Beautiful scenery is just one of them.

“The school is found in the rolling hills of Floyds Knobs, Indiana,” said Shireman. “People come here for its location and beauty in the area.”

St. Mary of the Knobs is known for it’s beauty, but also it’s history.

“St. Mary is the oldest Catholic community within the Archdiocese of Indianapolis going back to 1823. The school was public for 136 years. Then, in 2000, the school reopened as a parochial institution. This year is the 10th year anniversary of the school as a Catholic parochial school. Our athletic program is still being built. Until about five years ago, we weren’t involved from a deanery standpoint in Indiana.”

Shireman, in her first year as Athletic Director at St. Mary of the Knobs, attended St. Anthony’s Grade School and Providence High School. With her husband being a Providence High School graduate as well, they enjoy watching their two children participate in sports at the parish. Shireman is excited to be a part of the “vibrant community that has grown to have more than 2,630 parishioners.”

With that growth to the parish has come dedication, teamwork and expansion to the athletic department.

“We have 175 students (pre-K-6th grade). With the completion of our fabulous Geis Activity Center, which opened in 2010, and new church currently under construction, we are ready to open a new and exciting chapter in our history,” said Shireman. “Of the 92 contiguous acres at St. Mary of the Knobs, we recently added a football field for the Home of Floyd County Catholic Football as well,” said Shireman.

With the Hawks soaring into new opportunities, they have enjoyed success within the New Albany Deanery in the past five years. The following includes different achievements for the school:

  • 5/6 Volleyball - 2010 Deanery League Champions, 2010 Deanery Tourney Champions
  • 5/6 Girls Basketball - 2010 Deanery League Champions
  • 5/6 Boys Basketball - 2009 Deanery Tourney Runner Up, 2010 Deanery League Champions, 2010 Deanery Tourney Champions
  • Track/Field - 2010 Deanery Champions in 800M, 600M, 200M, Long Jump, 2011 Deanery Champions 200M, Long Jump, and 2011 Deanery Champion 400M

Shireman says her dedication to the school and athletic department fits right into the overall goals for the young student athletes.

“We are building our athletic program at St. Mary of the Knobs while maintaining some of the highest ISTEP scores in Floyd County,” said Shireman. “Athletics build character, strength, and a love for the game. Whether winning or losing, we teach to do it all with dignity, and we want to enable the kids to be good leaders. Our program is about each athlete doing their best, while being part of team and maintaining a high academic standard.”

Shireman’s goals for the future include teaching the young student athletes the priorities in life while continuing to build a stronger, larger athletic community.

Said Shireman: “Every time we see a smile light up a child's face when they make their first basket or goal, it makes all of the time and energy we put into our athletic program worthwhile. Our dedicated athletes, parents, and coaches make up the village we call St. Mary of the Knobs, and we have a lot of room for growth here.”


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