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Assumption High School

Assumption High School Newsletter

March 20, 2015

Dear Assumption Community,

Welcome to another installment of the Assumption High School e-newsletter. This issue recaps Catholic Schools Week and Dance Marathon, along with recent student accomplishments and winter sports. We also look ahead to April Knight, which is "sneaking up" on the calendar. It will be fun to celebrate "Big Fright" (details below) with you on April 17! As always, we look forward to hearing from you, so please continue to send your news, feedback, and ideas. May the Holy Spirit be with you during this Lenten season.

One in the Spirit,

Jordan Gizzarelli '99
Director of Alumni Relations

Assumption News

Assumption, Grade Schools Celebrate CSW 2015

Catholic Schools Week (CSW) 2015 was held January 25 – 30. Students and parents kicked off the week by speaking at local parish Masses about the benefits of a Catholic school education.

During Catholic Schools Week, Assumption took part in a combined Scott County K-12 Catholic Schools project, Dodgeball for Diapers, which benefited Bethany Home for Children and Families, Humility of Mary Shelter and Women's Choice Center.

On Monday afternoon, students participated in a dodgeball tournament, with all entry fees going to purchase diapers, and on Wednesday, students donated $3 to the project to spend the school day in their pajamas instead of school uniforms. Assumption and its four feeder elementary schools – All Saints Catholic School, John F. Kennedy Catholic School, Lourdes Catholic School, and St. Paul the Apostle – collected 14,122 diapers and 24,000 wipes that were then donated to the aforementioned charities.

The annual Catholic Schools Mass was held Thursday, January 29, in the AHS gymnasium. Students, faculty, and staff from the grade schools joined the Assumption community for the celebration. Father Jason Crossen of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish celebrated the Mass and Fr. Rich Adam, Fr. Chris Young, Fr. Thom Hennen, and Fr. Apo Mpanda concelebrated.

Dance Marathon Benefits Those Who Can't Dance

The Assumption Student Council held its second annual Dance Marathon on Saturday, Feb. 28, with more than 100 students participating to benefit youth cancer victims and their families. Dance Marathon is a nationwide movement involving college and high school students at more than 250 schools across the country, all raising money for the Children's Miracle Network Hospital in their community.

Student organizers from the St. Ambrose University Dance Marathon, including AHS alum Hannah Zinger '12, helped mentor the AHS Dance Marathon, which raised more than $3,700 in just its second year, bringing the two-year total for the event to over $7,300.

Mark Your Calendar for April Knight 2015 | Big Fright

The 29th Annual April Knight Gala and fundraiser will be held Friday, April 17, at 6:30 p.m. in the Assumption High School Gym. This year’s theme is “Big Fright On April Knight”. According to April Knight Coordinator, Susie Foster, “Big Fright On April Knight is glamorous goth, and all things macabre, dark, spooky, and scary. Following recent tradition, attendees are encouraged to come in theme attire. Those looking for inspiration might take a look or Maleficent, Beetle Juice, The Dark Knight, Nightmare Before Christmas, Sons of Anarchy, or even further back, the 60’s comedies The Addams Family or The Munsters.”

Reservations may be made by downloading and returning the Reply Card located here. Invitations for the event may be viewed here.

Raffle tickets are currently on sale for both the Early Bird Drawing (March 31) and Grand Prize Drawing (April 17) and may be purchased by downloading the form located here and sending in your payment along with a completed form.

Please contact April Knight Coordinator, Susie Foster, ( for more information.

Senior Receives DAR Good Citizen Award

Cindy Chavez, a senior, was one of eight local students from Iowa Quad-City high schools to receive a Good Citizen award from the Hannah Caldwell Chapter of the National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution at an honors luncheon March 5 at the Davenport Outing Club. Each school selected their senior student based on the criteria of dependability, service, leadership and patriotism to an outstanding degree. A member of the National Honor Society, a Rotary luncheon representative, and a student ambassador, Chavez is also the president of the Art Club, a member of ACT Club and is on the First Honor Roll.

Outside of the school day, Cindy is a proud half-gallon blood donor; has helped design and build trees for Festival of Trees, and is active in her church youth group. Cindy also volunteers at Genesis Medical Center as a rounding tech and was Assumption homecoming queen this past fall.

More Good News for Villa Maria

Villa Maria Childcare Center, located in the former convent at Assumption, recently completed an unannounced annual inspection performed by the Department of Human Services. The center passed with flying colors, obtaining the optimum result - a two year non-provisional license. Villa Maria opened in 2008, and now serves more than 60 infants and preschool aged children - including several children that belong to faculty members and alumni.

For more information about Villa Maria, please contact Jessica Billings at or 563-449-5543.

Fine Arts News

Sophomore Headed to Speech and Debate Nationals

Caitlin Steimle, a sophomore specializing in dramatic interpretation, recently won the District portion of the 2015 IHSSA State Speech and Debate Tournament. As a result, Steimle qualified for the State Meet where she took home second place honors, and a trip to the national tournament in Dallas during June.

Caitlin performed an excerpt from the book, Where You Left Me, by Jennifer Gardner Trulson, which tells about Trulson's life without her husband who died on 9/11. Steimle is believed to be the first Assumption student to qualify for an interpretation event at the national level in the past 20 years.

Watch the Winter Choir Concert on YouTube

The Assumption Choir recently performed their Winter Concert in Sunderbruch Auditorium. Below are links to watch the concert on YouTube. Enjoy!

Dancin at the Rock by Donald Moore
Lord, for Thy Tender Mercy’s Sake by Richard Farrant
Thy Will Be Done by Craig Courtney
Jasmine Flower (Chinese Folk Song) by Jing Ling-Tam
Flower Drum Song (Chinese Folk Song) by Jing Ling-Tam

Assumption to Host IHSMA District Solo/Ensemble Festival

The Assumption Music Department has been selected to host the 2015 IHSMA District Solo-Small Ensemble Festival on Saturday, March 28. Nearly 300 students and teachers from area 3A schools will be performing musical selections, both vocal and instrumental, for adjudication in categories including percussion, piano, vocals, winds and strings.

If you're interested in volunteering for the event click here, or contact Mr. Trevor Loes, Choir Director at

Athletic News

Knight Grapplers Finish Close Second at State Tournament

The Assumption wrestling program arrived in Des Moines fresh off another Sectional title and looking to continue its recent string of domination at the Iowa State Tournament by winning the program's fifth consecutive Iowa Class 2A State Dual Tournament title.

On Feb. 18 at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, the Knights, under the direction of former State Champion Pete Bush '79, topped New Hampton 57-14 in the quarterfinals and third-ranked Mediapolis 64-12 in the semifinals to advance to the championship against top-ranked Union, LaPorte-City. In a back and forth championship battle that came down to the final match, the Knights came up just short, falling 33-31.

On the individual side, seven Knights qualified for the 2015 Traditional State Tournament, including senior heavyweight Gabriel Rangel, who finished third overall. Sophomore Noah Broderson took home 7th place honors at 220 lbs., while senior Travis Pulse was 8th at 113 lbs.

Prior to Saturday night's state finals, Athletic Director and former head wrestling coach Wade King was inducted into the Iowa High School Athletic Association's Wrestling Hall of Fame.

Seniors Key Boys Hoops Late Season Run

The Assumption Boys Basketball team enjoyed a successful 2014-15 campaign, finishing with an overall record of 17-6, and a 14-2 mark in the Mississippi Athletic Conference. The Knights caught fire late in the year and reeled off nine consecutive wins, before seeing their season come to a close in the District Final against Mt. Vernon.

Current Assumption President and former principal, Andy Craig '95, coached the squad this past season that featured seven seniors, including Second Team All-MAC selections Roman Youngblut and Evan Wadsager, and Honorable Mention all-league picks Hunter Grenier and Tim Doyle.

There were many highlights for this season, including close wins over Sioux City Heelan and Bettendorf (twice), and a convincing 54-34 win over Rock Island Alleman to keep the "A Trophy" at Assumption for another year. Assumption also knocked off eventual Iowa Class 4A State Runner-up Pleasant Valley on Senior Night to finish in a tie for 2nd place in the MAC standings. The Knights dispatched of Maquoketa 56-38 in their playoff opener.

Girls Basketball Breaks Through Late, Finishes Strong

The Lady Knights Basketball team closed out the season on a hot streak of their own with wins in 11 of their final 13 games to finish with an overall record of 14-9, including 12-4 in the MAC.

Head Coach Rachael Milliman's squad ended the season in a tie for third place in the conference standings, with senior point guard Riley Behan earning First Team All-Conference honors. Sophomore Jasmine Harris was a Second Team selection, and senior Christine Rohlf earned Honorable Mention accolades from the league's coaches.

The Lady Knights entered the postseason on an eight-game winning streak that increased to nine games with a regional tournament win over Maquoketa, before falling to North Scott in a rematch from earlier in the season. The future looks very bright for the Lady Knights with the Sophomore team winning the MAC with a record of 15-1 and featuring the league's leading scorer in freshman Bailey Brown (14.2 ppg).

Behan to Continue Soccer Career at Iowa State

Senior girls soccer standout Riley Behan, a three-year starter on defense and 2013 First Team Academic All-State selection by the Iowa High School Soccer Coaches Association, has committed to play soccer beginning in Fall 2015 at Iowa State University for Head Coach Tony Minatta and the Cyclones. Read Quad-City Times article

She has 22 career goals and 10 assists, and earned Iowa Class 1A State Tournament All-Tournament Team honors after helping lead the Knights to State titles in both 2013 and 2014. Behan owns a 4.238 GPA and plans to major in engineering at ISU, where she will reunite with former Assumption teammate Danielle Moore '13, a starting midfielder for the Cyclones.

Also the starting point guard for Assumption, Behan was a member of Assumption’s Iowa Class 3A girls basketball state championship teams in 2012 and 2013. In addition, her club team, the Iowa City Alliance, was the first team from Iowa to reach the U.S. Youth Soccer National Tournament when it did so in 2013.

The Girls Soccer program has won four consecutive Iowa Class 1A state championships (2011-2014) and opens the 2015 Season on April 4 when it hosts Cedar Rapids Washington in a non-conference game starting at 4:30 p.m.

Alumni Notes


• Jared Smith ‘96, president of Ticketmaster North America, was named No. 94 on The 2015 Billboard Power 100. Read article

• Michael Knouse '13, a sophomore pithcer for Wartburg College, was named the Iowa Conference Pitcher of the Week for the week ending March 15. Read article

• Ben Skinner ’12 was selected to the 2014 USA Today All-Iowa Academic Team, and was nominated for the 2014 USA Today All-USA Academic Team as a sophomore at Iowa Central Community College (ICCC). Currently a junior at the University of Illinois majoring in finance with an emphasis in real estate, Skinner was also a commencement speaker for his graduating class at ICCC.

• J.T. Vonderhaar '11 scored his 1,000th career point for the Coe College men’s basketball team in the Kohawks’ 71-66 win over Loras on Feb. 14.

• Liam Baldwin ’14 made the Dean’s List for fall term 2014-2015 at Augustana College.

• Adam Bengfort ’11, made the Dean’s List for fall term 2014-2015 at Augustana College.

• Andrew Skalak ’14 made the Dean’s List for fall term 2014-2015 at Augustana College.

• Brendan Gould ’14, a freshman wrestler at Augustana College (IL), won the 2015 College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin wrestling championship at 133 lbs. Thomas Reyhons '11, a senior grappler, took second at 184 lbs. for the Vikings.

Marriages & Engagements

• Andrew Frandsen ‘04 is engaged to Mica Ricketts. A September wedding at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church is planned.

• Michael Wiebler ’01 is engaged to Kelly Jean Valentine. The couple plans to wed in October.

• Joe Bradley ’99 is engaged to Emily Richardson. The couple will wed May 16, 2015, in Atlanta.

In Memory

• Judith A. Braden ‘63 Mesmer passed away on Jan. 21, 2015.

• Sharon K. Goettsch ‘61 South passed away on Feb. 1, 2015.

• Gerald A. “Jerry” Vieger ’76 passed away on Feb. 13, 2015.

If there is news that you would like to see appear in the next newsletter, please email us at:

Upcoming 2015 Reunions

Class of 2010: June 20, 2015
Contact: Sam Thrapp

Class of 2000: June 13, 2015
Contact: Liz King

Class of 1980: TBA
Contact: Meg Molyneaux Courter

Class of 1975: August 21-22
Contact: Tim Berchtold

Class of 1965: October 1-3
Contact: Mary Fran (Myatt) Payson

If you are interested in planning your class reunion, or know of someone who might be, please contact Jordan Gizzarelli at 563-326-5313 x 242 for more information.

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Assumption High School · 1020 W Central Park Ave · Davenport, IA 52804 · USA