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Senior Sawyer White Commits to Dual Sports at Illinois Wesleyan!

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Montini Catholic is congratulating senior Sawyer White, for her commitment to join the Titans of Illinois Wesleyan University (Bloomington).  Montini's talented athlete is looking forward to swapping her maroon and gold for the Titan green next fall!  Impressingly, Sawyer has committed to represent the Titans in two sports - Soccer and Basketball.

Sawyer, who just celebrated her basketball senior night this past weekend (January 22), began playing her sports of choice at a very young age (soccer at 4 and basketball at 6).  "I love playing both basketball and soccer because they allow me to be part of a team and to play two sports I love with my friends - and for some great coaches."

Sawyer_WEB2.jpgSawyer (left, with Varsity Basketball Coach Shannon Spanos) has had quite an impressive athletic - and academic career as a Bronco.  She was named All Conference during her freshman and junior years of soccer (her sophomore season was canceled due to Covid restrictions in 2020).   She was also named Honorable Mention in sectionals. Throughout her four years on the court and field - she has achieved All Academic Conference status in both Basketball and Soccer proving that her enthusiasm for achievement and success does not stop with athletics.  She is an involved member of Montini's Student Government and National Honor Society and was most recently named an Illinois State Scholar, ranking academically among Illinois' top 10%!

Throughout the daunting recruitment process, Sawyer entertained offers from several colleges -
Loras College, North Central College, University of St. Francis, North Park University, Carthage College, Benedictine University, and Edgewood College.  In the end, it was Illinois Wesleyan that captivated her.  Many high school athletes, when searching for their college home, report that 'they just know' when they've found the right fit - and Sawyer was no different.  "From the time I stepped on campus I just got a feeling that IWU was home. I love the athletics side, the basketball and soccer traditions, the kindness and coaching ability of the coaching staff, and the family feel of the teams. I also love the academics side in that Illinois Wesleyan has great professors and classes, they offer the major I intend to pursue (Elementary Education), and have a high job placement rate after college."

First and foremost on her 'to do' list, however, is getting her Broncos down state one last time to compete in the IHSA Championship at Redbird Arena. "We have a really special group of girls on the team and I’m so proud of them and the work they constantly put in. It would mean the world to not only me, but the rest of the team and coaches to see all our hard work pay off!"  The Broncos are well on their way after having just secured the GCAC Red Division Championship on January 20th!  (The Broncos' conference championship journey begins on February 1st.)  "My favorite sports memory (so far) at Montini was during my sophomore year when ourbasketball team went down state to play in the state tournament. We ended up placing third that year, but I wouldn’t trade that experience for the world!"

Parents, Jay and Lisa White, are also very excited for their daughter.  "They are very happy for me. They are excited that IWU isn’t too far from home so they can come watch my games. They support me so much and I hope to make them proud."

An O'Neill Middle School graduate, Sawyer, credits Montini Catholic for helping her to excel as a student and athlete.  "Montini offers classes that suit me as a student. They are insightful classes that challenge me daily and help me prepare for the course load and classes I will take at IWU. All members on staff at Montini are also very supportive of my academic journey. They offer help and are very accommodating when I need something. Overall, I’m so thankful I was able to attend Montini and I could not have asked for a better experience!"  

"We have all witnessed Sawyer’s incredible growth in her basketball and athletic ability over the last two years," says Head Varsity Basketball Coach Shannon Spanos.   "She can shoot, defend, rebound and handle the ball. She has seen her hard work pay off and we couldn’t be happier for her and all her accomplishments.  But Sawyer’s best traits are off the court. Sawyer is the definition of a leader. She is always thinking about others, how she can help or let them know she is caring about them. That might be taking the new freshman to lunch or making cookies for the entire team. Her work ethic and determination will take her very far at the next level and in life. I can’t wait to see all that she will do at Illinois Wesleyan."

"I want to thank everyone who has supported me throughout the years. Without the help of my family, friends, coaches, teammates, and teachers I would not be where I am today. I am grateful for everything and everybody that made this possible!  I can’t wait to see what I accomplish in the next four years. I’m excited to play basketball for Coach Mia and Coach Brian and play for our new soccer coach who should be announced soon. I knew Illinois Wesleyan was going to be the best place for me and I’m just so happy!"  

"We are very proud of Sawyer and her commitment to Illinois Wesleyan," said President Jim Segredo.  "She's a terrific young lady!  We wish her great success and look forward to cheering her and our Broncos on to Redbird Arena this year!"

Sawyer White is from Downers Grove.  She is a member of Evangelical Lutheran Church and attended O'Neill Middle School in Downers Grove.

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