Seniors further their athletic achievements in college


Ms. Rachel Zurheide

Ten Sacred Heart seniors will be furthering their athletic careers in college.

Ten Sacred Heart Greenwich student-athletes are planning to continue their athletic achievements in college.  Seniors Emma Caruso, Claire Chmiel, Ashley Giannetti, Carly Haines, Katie Keller, Erin O’Connor, Paige Pucel, Bella Rogers, Amelia Sheehan, and Morgan Smith will all be participating in a collegiate sport.

All ten seniors signed their National Letters of Intent December 17.  As they pursue their athletic futures, Ms. Elizabeth Dennison, Director of Athletics, hopes that the student-athletes will take lessons that they have learned both on and off the field at Sacred Heart and apply them to their college careers.

“I firmly believe that athletics is a great way to re-enforce many of the lessons learned and studied in the classroom,” Ms. Dennison said.  “Students learn valuable life-skills such as time management, communication, hard work, how to take a risk and earn opportunities, and how to work effectively and thrive in a team environment.”

Bella, Emma, Paige, and Ashley will all be rowing in college.  Bella, who is on Sacred Heart’s varsity rowing team, will be rowing at the University of Notre Dame.  Both Emma and Paige currently row for Connecticut Boat Club, in Norwalk, Connecticut.  Emma will join the rowing team at Williams College while Paige has committed to Indiana University.

Ashley, who has been on the RowAmerica Rye varsity girls team for four years, plans on continuing her rowing career at Brown University.  Given the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, Ashley is unsure about the future of the upcoming fall season, but believes that the skills she has acquired from rowing in high school will help her succeed in future seasons.

Ashley Giannetti ’20 signs her National Letter of Intent, December 17, 2019. Courtesy of Ms. Rachel Zurheide

“The biggest thing I have learned from my experience rowing in high school is that building a strong dynamic amongst teammates is the most important and effective aspect of the sport,” Ashley said. “Although rowing is a very individualized sport in many ways, it is crucial that each individual athlete comes together to create one boat where everyone encourages and supports each other.  I definitely think I will take these values to college with me as I meet new people and join a new team.”

Claire, Morgan, Amelia, and Katie will each play lacrosse at the Division I level in college.  All four girls are members of Sacred Heart’s varsity lacrosse team, and Morgan, Amelia, and Katie are co-captains of the team this year.

Claire will play at Villanova University next year while Morgan will be playing for the University of Pennsylvania.  Amelia is joining the women’s lacrosse team at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Katie is continuing her lacrosse career at Duke University.

Katie has played lacrosse at Sacred Heart for the past eight years.  She shared the lessons that she has learned from her experience at school that she hopes to carry with her into her collegiate career.

Katie Keller ’20 will be continuing her lacrosse career at Duke University.  Courtesy of Mr. Christopher Pope

“I have learned a lot about teamwork,” Katie said.  “Every person on a team is important no matter what year you are and I think I am going to bring that with me to college. I know the pace in collegiate lacrosse is much faster, so I am hoping to improve upon that so that I can easily adjust to it.”

Carly, the captain of Sacred Heart’s varsity golf team, will bring her talents to the University of Louisville.  The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) ranks the University of Louisville as thirty-fourth best women’s golf team in the country, according to

After playing squash at Sacred Heart for the past five years, Erin, co-captain of the varsity squash team, will continue competing at the University of Virginia.  During her senior season at Sacred Heart, Erin and the team progressed to the 2020 United States High School Team Squash Championships, where they finished with two wins and two losses.

Erin discussed her experience playing for Sacred Heart and what she hopes to accomplish in her future seasons at the University of Virginia.

“I have learned how to play an individual sport in a team setting, which is something I had never experienced before coming to Sacred Heart,” Erin said. “I hope to improve by continuing to train hard and focus specifically on areas where I know need work.”

Ms. Dennison expressed her excitement for the ten students going on to play college sports.  She believes that participating in a college sport will have a lasting impact on student-athletes.

“The time spent with your team, practicing and competing in your sport, is one that will create memories that last a lifetime,” Ms. Dennison said. “Being a collegiate student-athlete is hard work and demands focus and discipline- but the shared experiences, lessons learned, and bonds formed make all of the hard work worthwhile.  Every individual student-athlete comes out of the experience stronger and with a sense of purpose, and this serves them well as they go on to pursue their goals after college.”

Featured Image Courtesy of Ms. Rachel Zurheide