November 23, 2014

Elyria
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50°F
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High school: EC’s Katie Svat a real team player

Sports is about teamwork, and teamwork is about unselfishness.
Katie Svat oozes both.
The 17-year-old two-sport letterwinner admitted that winning Elyria Catholic’s 2008 Outstanding Female Athlete Award has been a goal — not just for her, but for her peers and parents.
“I have been voting on it the last three years, so it’s something I have definitely thought a lot about,” said Svat, who was presented the award Friday by EC girls athletic director and faculty manager Suzanne Camp. “I worked hard towards it, and winning it means I was helping my teams to be winners. It’s not just for me, but for the people I’ve played with and my coaches who have helped me become a better player.
“It’s also a big deal for me to win it because of my parents,” she said of Rick and Nancy Svat. “They have been there supporting me all the way.”  
The annual honor, the girls counterpart to the Lou Rotunda Award for boys, goes to the senior who excels athletically and academically, participates in extracurricular activities apart from athletics and exhibits school spirit and citizenship. It is voted on by the school’s administration, faculty, staff, coaches and female athletes and donated by EC boosters Ron and Janet Gilgenbach.
Svat, the award’s 33rd recipient, fits solidly into each of those categories.
Academically, she was a two-year member of the National Honor Society and earned spots on the all-academic volleyball, softball and basketball teams. She served on the Student Senate two years, was a Student Ambassador for three and a two-year Peer Ministry Eucharistic Minister. She also participated in the SADD program for two years.
“Whether I’m watching her on the field or court, Katie is all hustle, effort and determination,” said Camp. “She is an excellent recipient of this award.”
Svat’s eight varsity letters include four each in volleyball and softball. She also played two years of basketball.
She recently completed her second year as starting catcher and team captain for a young Panther softball team that finished 15-7. Her prowess earned her spots on the all-conference, all-county and all-district first teams and an honorable mention on the All-Northeast Ohio team. She is also a Lorain County All-Star.
“Katie is an exemplary student-athlete,” said EC softball coach Brian Daw. “While maintaining a high degree of academic prowess, she has achieved the highest marks of excellence in her chosen sports.
“She has mastered a high level of skill and superior knowledge of the game. As team captain, she consistently led with her passion for the sport and compassion for her teammates.”
Svat also captained EC’s volleyball team, won first-team all-county and all-district honors in addition to spots on the Lorain County and district all-star teams. She was also named the team’s Defensive Player of the Year.
EC volleyball coach Kim Watson echoed Daw’s comments.
“It has been an absolute pleasure coaching Katie over the last two years,” said Watson. “I can’t think of a more deserving person. She consistently gave 110 percent. She not only pushed herself to be the best defensive player, but she expected the same from her teammates.
“There were many times when we were unsure if Katie was going to make it out of practice or a game in one piece. She constantly threw her body on the ground to get every ball she could. I thank Katie for all of her hard work, dedication and for being the person she is.”
Svat was also active in the community, having served with Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Christmas on Campus, Special Olympics and the Salvation Army Food Drive. She was a youth volleyball and basketball camp volunteer.
After a summer of lifeguarding, Svat will attend Ohio University, majoring in physical therapy.
Contact Linda Cudlin at 329-7130 or lcudlin@chroniclet.com.

Past winners

1976 — Ann Farrell    
1977 — Linda Zemanek    
1978 — Mary Ann Kobb    
1979 — Patty Diedrick    
1980 — Mary Farrell    
1981 — Ellen Borowy    
1982 — Diane Schmitz    
1983 — Lynne Machovina    
1984 — Christina Arnold    
1985 — Carrie Cummons    
1986 — Niki Boyson    
1987 — Lisa Horvath    
1988 — Rebecca Yarish    
1989 — Colleen Wukie    
1990 — Lisa Ivkanec    
1991 — Julie Deeks    
1992 — Sheila Wilford    
1993 — Laurie Seward    
1994 — Angela Schneider    
1995 — Kim Kenney    
1996 — Jessica Patton    
1997 — Jennifer DeChant    
1998 — Rachel Serazin    
1999 — Jennifer Ruth    
2000 — Catherine Geletka    
2001 — Megan Fiore    
2002 — Jennifer Thompson    
2003 — Stacey Laveen    
2004 — Kileen Lehman    
2005 — Danielle Bozicevich    
2006 — Lauren Berk    
2007 — Paige Samek
2008 — Katelyn (Katie) Svat