Robotics Wins Dallas Regional; Qualifies for World Championship

Jesuit’s nationally-prominent robotics program sealed its bid to the 2016 FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Championships with a commanding victory at the Dallas FRC Regional, which included nearly 50 schools from multiple states as well as teams from China, Brazil, and Mexico.

Jesuit’s team, known as The All Sparks, finished the qualification matches with a tournament-best record of 10-1, before sweeping an Elite 8 elimination bracket with their alliance partners, The Robowranglers (Greenville High School) and the Robobusters (Dallas, Texas). On the team leaderboard, The All Sparks finished first followed by The RoboChargers (Emmett J. Conrad High School). Groups from Rockwall High School, Allen High School, South Logan, Arkansas, and San Jose dos Campos, Brazil, were among other teams finishing in the top 10.

“The boys have done an excellent job this year acting as a team to accomplish their goals,” noted faculty mentor Michael Couvillon. “I am very proud of all that they have done to earn a spot at the Championships in St. Louis.”

In addition to finishing as the top team at the tournament, The All Sparks collected additional hardware by winning the Innovation in Control Award sponsored by Rockwell Automation. It was the second time since 2012 that the All Sparks secured that specific honor, while the 2009 FIRST Rookie All-Star Award winners have won all of the technical awards offered in FRC, including the Quality Award, Creativity Award, Industrial Design Award, and Engineering Excellence.

The FRC Championships serves as the premier high school robotics competition across the globe. In 2014, in front of 20,000 spectators and against more than 12,000 students, Jesuit Dallas was part of the winning alliance that captured the coveted world championship.

This year’s championship will be hosted at the Edward Jones Dome in St. Louis from April 27-30 and will feature over 40,000 attendees and 900 teams from 39 countries.

Debate Sizzles at First & Second Year National Championships

All four of Jesuit’s teams competing at the First & Second Year Debate National Championships posted top 10 finishes in a tremendous performance for the Blue & Gold. Hosted by Woodward Academy in Atlanta, over 60 schools from 15 states spanning coast to coast competed in the three-day annual event.

In the second year division, juniors Beomhak Lee and Zach Watts closed in ninth place, while a trio of Jesuit Dallas teams dotted the top 10 in the first year division. Lee and Watts finished with a 4-2 preliminary round record with wins over teams from Florida, Georgia and Tennessee before losing to Montgomery Bell Academy from Nashville in the first elimination round.

In the first year or novice division, Riler Holcombe and Ethan Jackson posted a 5-1 preliminary round record, while Jack Madden and Jack Moore, and Jack Griffiths and Pete Weigman posted 4-2 records with wins over teams from Illinois, Florida, Georgia, Arkansas, Louisiana, Tennessee, and Greenhill (Texas). All three teams lost to higher seeds in the first elimination round to finish in a tie for ninth on the team board.

In addition to the team awards, five debaters were recognized among the top 25 individual speakers, including Griffith (12th), Weigman (16th), Jackson (20th), Holcombe (21st), and Moore (22nd).

Each team debated six preliminary rounds with the top 16 competing in a March Madness style elimination tournament. Jesuit Dallas joined Montgomery Bell Academy (Tenn.) and Nile West (Ill.) as the only three schools in the country to qualify four teams for the elimination rounds across the two divisions.

Jesuit Dallas Debate Finishes Third at TFA State Championships

In an exciting spring break for Jesuit Dallas debate, the varsity team of senior Patrick Bender and junior Emmanuel Ruiz closed third overall at the 2016 Texas Forensic Association (TFA) State Debate Championships in Pflugerville, Texas. The duo led another impressive contingent to the state tournament, as three Jesuit teams finished in the top 20 with all six of those debaters earning All-State recognition.

Seniors Praneeth Kalva and Ethan Tsao finished ninth overall, and senior Joe Hall and junior Jake LoRocco teamed to finish 17th overall out of 106 of the best public and private schools debaters in the state. Texas boasts one of the most competitive qualifying processes in the country, and Jesuit was one of only three schools in the state to have five teams compete in the tournament.

The tournament consisted of six preliminary rounds with the top 32 teams competing in bracketed single-elimination rounds. In the prelims, Bender and Ruiz posted a 5-1 record and earned the 8th seed with wins over teams from Katy Taylor High School, WB Ray High School, and three teams from Houston Kinkaid. They defeated Sharyland High School and two teams from Austin Liberal Arts and Sciences High School in the second and third elimination rounds before losing to eventual tournament champions Law Magnet High School from Dallas in the semifinals. The performance marked the best finish by a Jesuit team since collecting a victory at the 2011 TFA State Championship.

Kalva and Tsao also finished the preliminary rounds with a 5-1 record and earned the 11th seed with wins over teams from Austin Westwood, Houston Bellaire, Anderson, Greenhill and the state champions from Law Magnet. They defeated another Austin Westwood team in the first elimination round before losing to state runner-up Lindale in the second elimination round. Hall and LoRocco finished the preliminary rounds with a 4-2 record with wins over teams from Van Horn, Central, Coppell, and Kempner High Schools, but lost to Law Magnet in the first elimination round.

Jesuit’s other qualifying teams of juniors Beomhak Lee and Alandro Valdez, and Greg Tan and Zach Watts finished in the top 50 but did not qualify for the elimination rounds. Lee and Valdez posted wins against Kingwood, Henderson, and the state champion Law Magnet team in the preliminary rounds and Tan and Watts bested Robert Vela, Kempner, and Trinity Valley High Schools.

52nd Annual Jesuit-Sheaner Relays to Showcase Best in Texas

Over 150 boys and girls teams from the most prominent high school track & field programs in the state of Texas are set to compete in the 52nd Annual Jesuit-Sheaner Relays on the campus of Jesuit Dallas. The two-day meet, which begins on Friday, March 18 with the running of the 3,200-meter run, brings together over 32 reigning UIL state champions, numerous All-Americans, and a number of nationally-ranked athletes for one of the most competitive mid-season meets in the country.

Saturday’s field events are scheduled to start at 8 a.m., with the running prelims beginning at 9:15 a.m. Saturday’s finals begin at 2 p.m. and will be broadcast live on MileSplit.

Nearly every event is a showcase, with the state and nation’s top-ranked athletes blanketing the field. On the boys’ side, the marquee race could end up being the 4x400m relay, which currently boasts three of the top seven teams in the country. U.S. #1 Bryce Hoppel of Midland will need to fend off a strong pack of contenders that includes U.S. #3 Cade Bethmann of Arlington Martin in the 800m, while the distance races represent the deepest events on the schedule. Frisco Independence’s Carter Blunt, who set a Sheaner-Relays record last year in the 3,200m with a time of 8:57.01, will be pressed to repeat as seven of the top 10 performers in the state are entered in the race, including the 2015 UIL 6A cross country state champion, Daniel Golden (The Woodlands); in the 1,600m, Blunt is among seven of the state’s top nine to bid for a coveted Sheaner-Relays title, including Texas #1 Reed Brown of Southlake Carroll.

The discus includes four of the top seven marks in the country, including national #1 William Petersson of Frisco Centennial, and the pole vault boasts the nation’s top two marks, as authored by Peyon Weissman (Grapevine) and Brandon Spokes (The Woodlands), respectively. Led by Texas #1 Devin Duvernay (Sache), the 100m is set to feature eight of the top 10-ranked sprinters in the state.

The boys’ field also includes the state’s top-ranked performers in the 400m (Keshun Reed, Arlington Martin); 110m hurdles (Bryce Douglas, Allen); triple jump (Jalen Seal, Fort Worth Boswell); high jump (Ianou Adeyeye, Mansfield Lake Ridge); and shot put (Adrian Piperi, The Woodlands). In the case of Seals and Piperi, their qualifying marks are tops in the U.S. among high school athletes.

The girls’ contingency boasts nearly as much firepower, including the nation’s top four teams in the 4x100m relay. The 100m hurdles will include 2015 6A state champ and U.S. #1, Alexis Duncan (DeSoto) as well as 5A state champ, Tonea Marshall (Arlington Seguin) and current U.S. #4 Ivy Walker (Mansfield Summit), while a star-studded 100m prelim will contain 11 of the state’s 20-fastest competitors, including U.S. #1 Kaylor Harris of Mesquite Horn. Jannia Price of Killeen Ellison, who has authored the country’s top-ranked performance in the discus, headlines a field that features eight of the top 13 marks in the state.

In addition to the outstanding cast of student-athletes, the meet will highlight honorary referee, Roy “Robot” Martin, who set the national high school record in the 200m (20.13) in 1985. Martin, who graduated from Roosevelt High School, led SMU to the 1986 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championship, and earned a spot on the 1984 and 1988 U.S. Olympic teams.

Visit the Jesuit-Sheaner Relays website for more information, including a complete meet schedule and up-to-date entry information.

Robotics Reveals Grover; Readies for Dallas Regional

The Jesuit Dallas robotics team, aka The All Sparks, recently unveiled its new robot, Grover. Looking to once again qualify for the FIRST World Championships, where in 2014, Jesuit Dallas students outlasted more than 12,000 students from around the globe as part of the winning alliance, Grover is set to lead The All Sparks at the 2016 Dallas FRC Regional Championships in the Irving Convention Center, March 24-26.

Jesuit Dallas 2016 Reveal Video

This year’s competition, known as Stronghold, is played by three-team alliances, and involves breaching an opponents’ defenses, known as outer works, and capturing their tower by first firing “boulders” (small foam balls) at it and then surrounding or scaling the tower using rungs. Points are scored by crossing elements of the tower’s outer works, shooting boulders into the opposing tower’s five goals in order to lower the tower strength, and by surrounding and scaling the tower.

FIRST Stronghold Game Reveal

Qualification matches for the Dallas FRC Regional begin at 9 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

UIL Announces New District Alignments

The University Interscholastic League (UIL) unveiled its new district alignments for the 2016-2018 seasons on Monday, combining Jesuit Dallas and Coppell with members of the Dallas and Richardson Independent School Districts to form the newest iteration of UIL District 9-6A, which will begin competition in August 2016.

District 9-6A will comprise of Jesuit Dallas, Coppell, Skyline, W.T. White, Richardson, Richardson Berkner, J.J. Pearce and Lake Highlands. According to the UIL website, this current alignment will be effective for football and basketball, with the remainder of sport alignments to be released at a later date.

The Rangers join a district full of familiar foes, re-joining the Richardson schools after a two-year stint with the Irving Independent School District. Jesuit Dallas will remain with Skyline and W.T. White for the fourth consecutive realignment, but will share a district with Coppell in all sports for the first time in program history.

District 10-6A, the Bi-District partner of District 9-6A, comprises of seven schools from the Garland Independent School District: Garland, North Garland, South Garland, Lakeview Centennial, Naaman Forest, Rowlett, and Sachse.

The end of the 2015-16 academic year will also close the current chapter of UIL District 9-6A, a two-year span that has already resulted in 10 UIL District Championships for Jesuit Dallas. After winning district crowns in baseball, cross country, golf, soccer, and swimming and diving during the 2014-15 season, the Rangers are currently in the midst of an equally productive year securing titles in the year’s first three district championships.

In early October, Jesuit Dallas cross country powered to the program’s first UIL District Championship of the year before the Ranger football team won its first outright district championship in program history in early November. Most recently, the Jesuit Dallas swimming and diving program won the 2015-16 UIL District 9-6A Championship on Jan. 29.

With the announcement of the new districts, the Jesuit Dallas football schedule also nears completion. The Rangers have agreed to two-year, non-district series’ with perennial state power DeSoto, Plano East and 2015 UIL 6A Football State Finalist Austin Lake Travis.

Locations for the week one contest against DeSoto and the week three clash with Lake Travis are yet to be determined, while the two-year series with Plano East will be played inside the iconic Cotton Bowl.

Debate Qualifies Fifth Team for State Championships

The Jesuit Dallas debate team experienced three exciting finishes including two first-place efforts and a state qualification at the Colleyville Heritage and Royce City tournaments this past weekend.

The varsity team of seniors Patrick Bender and Joe Hall earned third place honors at the Colleyville Heritage Invitational, which emulated a regional-level tournament as over 60 teams from Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Louisiana, and Florida took part in a highly-competitive varsity field. Bender and Hall were 4-1 in the preliminary rounds and then defeated a pair of schools from Kansas (Blue Valley and Shawnee Mission) in the first two elimination rounds before losing to San Antonio Reagan in the semifinals.

In the novice division, freshmen Ethan Jackson and Riler Holcombe went a flawless 8-0 on the day including a sweep over two teams from Greenhill in the semifinals and finals en route to first place. In addition, three other Jesuit Dallas freshmen teams finished in the top five. In the preliminary rounds, the rookie teams of Jack Madden and Jack Moore, Jack Griffiths and Pete Weigman, and Ashik Amar and Mac McCormack all posted 4-1 records before falling in the quarterfinals. All five novice teams that competed closed in the top 10, as the team of Giovannie Ferrer-Falto and Chris Tran ended as the ninth seed.

Across the metroplex at the Royce City invitational, the team of juniors Greg Tan and Zach Watts won first-place honors and became the fifth Jesuit team to qualify for the state tournament. Tan and Watts were 2-1 in the preliminary rounds and then defeated Grand View, Sachse and North Lamar in the elimination rounds for first place.

Jesuit Dallas is one of only four schools and the only private school in the entire state to qualify five or more teams for the state tournament joining Austin Westwood, Katy Taylor, and Hendrickson High Schools. The 2016 Texas Forensic Association State Tournament is being hosted at Hendrickson High School in Pflugerville from March 10-12.

Nutrition & Exercise Broadcast Presentation

New Year’s resolutions can be short lived, because they are driven by external motivation, rather than internal focus. Jesuit Dallas Director of Sports Science, Micheal Cahill, who is currently a PhD candidate at Auckland University in New Zealand, will outline key features on this topic on Wednesday, Feb. 3 at 6 p.m. in the Terry Center.

The presentation, which is free and open to all members of the Jesuit community, will focus on Sleep, Nutrition and Exercise, and the interchangeable role they play throughout our lifestyles. The presentation will also be available online both live and on-demand at Jesuit’s campus central video portal.

Cahill’s talk will include the current paradigm in nutritional habits within the United States, how sleep and lifestyle impacts our nutritional habits, understanding the food choices we make and the influence they have on our body, and steps toward implementing a four-week progressive sleep, nutrition and exercise regime to maintain sustainable changes.

Cahill is a member of the sports performance staff at Jesuit Dallas. The program supports the entire academic community, primarily to the School’s 700+ student athletes. For three straight years, the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports named Jesuit Dallas as a recipient of the Strength of America Award. The only high school in Texas to ever receive the honor, Jesuit’s program places a strong emphasis on the traditional approach to strength and conditioning by using scientifically proven methods to increase strength, power, speed and agility, while also focusing on the psychological and dietary aspects of athletic performance.

Jesuit Students Selected for All-State Band

Eight students from Jesuit Dallas will be performing on Saturday, Jan. 30 as part of the Texas Private School Music Educators Association (TPSMEA) 2016 All-State Clinic and Concert. Under the direction of David Wilson, Director of Bands at the University of Mississippi, the performance will take place at the Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts in Richardson, Texas.

Jesuit’s contingent includes senior Henry Chu (trumpet), juniors Daniel Ritter (bassoon), Joshua Terk (baritone saxophone), and Zach Watts (clarinet), and sophomores Anirudh Kantareddy (contra-bass clarinet), Ben Miller (bass clarinet), Michael Miramontes (clarinet), and Joey Wong-Vermillion (trumpet).

There are four performing groups beginning at 5:30 p.m., with the concert band performance following choir, orchestra, and jazz band.

Charles W. Eisemann Center for Performing Arts Location Map

Jesuit Announces Live Broadcast Partnership

Jesuit Dallas is bringing our fans closer to the action than ever before. The School launched last year to widespread acclaim. Mirroring the look and feel of a collegiate web presence (our hosting provider, Sidearm Sports, counts University of Texas, University of Kansas, and Syracuse University among its clients), fans of Jesuit Rangers athletics can find detailed information on all of the School’s varsity teams, in addition to highlight videos, weekly award winners, fan polls, and a treasure trove of historical information.

In the fall, Jesuit proudly announced a three-year partnership with Stretch Internet to serve as the provider for the Rangers’ live audio and video streaming efforts, while the School also began incorporating live, in-game statistical software for select sports. Free of charge and assisted by the broadcasting and stat-tracking talents of the student body, Jesuit fans can now follow the Rangers from the comfort of their own home all over the world.

In addition, Stretch Internet developed a separate custom video portal for non-athletic events, including the Distinguished Alumnus Prayer Service, class awards convocations, and commencement. Visit to access both live and on-demand content.