December 5th, 2012

Elementary Excellence: St. Rita

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor

Elementary Excellence: St. Rita
photo from the St. Rita athletic facebook page

A brief overview of the St. Rita athletic program

Despite being one of the smaller schools in the CSAA, St. Rita athletic director Carolyn Patton is proud of the way her student-athletes compete against the larger schools.

With an enrollment of 223 students, the Mustangs have enjoyed successful fall sports seasons in volleyball and football and look forward to having a full complement of teams in basketball. Patton is excited about what her school has to offer this year.


St. Rita just finished with volleyball and football, now the basketball season is in full swing. Patton is excited about what her school has to offer this year.

“Our third-fourth grade football team had 23 kids this year,” said Patton. “In the upper grades, we merged with St. Nicholas. We had a total of five fifth and sixth graders on the team while six seventh and eighth graders participated on this year’s team.”

The 2012 volleyball season proved to be successful at St. Rita. One of their teams finished with only one loss and a second team advanced to the second round of the city tournament.

“Our volleyball team had a successful season,” said Patton. “We had two seventh and eighth grade teams. Our number one team was 6-1 in league play and we lost in the first round of the tournament. Our number two team made it to the second round. The fifth and sixth grade team lost in the first round.”

Kids who are just beginning grade school have the opportunity to learn volleyball at a young age. There’s no city tournament held for the kids that are younger than fifth grade, but the student-athletes can learn a lot at that level.

“We had two third and fourth grade teams and they are taught the fundamentals of the game,” said Patton. “We also host one first-second grade league that played on Friday nights. Two of our teams participated in that league.”

But volleyball and football season are in the past. Patton shifts her focus to the basketball program which just started play this past week.

Basketball season is underway,” said Patton. “This year, we have two seventh-eighth grade teams, two fifth-sixth grade teams, and two third-fourth grade teams for the boys. For the girls, we have one seventh-eighth grade team and one third-fourth grade team. The first week just ended and we did okay.”

It can be tough to win at a small school, but Patton focuses on the advantages of being small rather than the disadvantages.

“In our school you get to know all the coaches because we are small,” said Patton. “As an athletic director, I have the opportunity to meet new people from other schools. I love being an AD as much as I love coaching volleyball.”

And with that said, Patton finds working with a small program rewarding. And she wants them to win while following the rules.

“I want our program to be top notch and we want to follow all the rules under the CSAA guidelines,” said Patton. “We have good people that help me as the athletic director and we all work together so that things run smoothly. The thing that is rewarding to me about our program is that we play with heart, desire, and never give up. We are a small school but our kids play with all they have.”



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