Keelan named to All-State Academic team
Skokie Saturday 10-27-12 St. Ignatius's #257 Jack Keelan wins the boy's cross country sectional race at Niles West HS in Skokie Saturday afternoon 10-27-12. | Kevin Tanaka for~Sun-Tiimes Media.
IHSA ALL-STATE ACADEMIC TEAM
(Chicago area selections)
Alexander Alcantara, St. Francis
Emily Beltran, St. Ignatius
Benjamine Brissette, Maine West
Emma Fisher, York
Erik Greenwell, Glenbard South
Jack Keelan, St. Ignatius
Brian O’Keefe, Glenbrook North
Rena Ranallo, St. Edward
Allison Tran, Vernon Hills
Courtney Ackerman, New Trier; Brooke Bedford, Neuqua Valley; Tristan Burnham, Downers North; Mary Kathleen Cahill, St. Scholastica; Anthony Campanero, St. Patrick; Craig Claire, Morris; Maribel Garcia, Kelly; Michael Hyc, St. Laurence; Alia Jamison, Hillcrest; Martin Martinez, Warren; Moira McDermott, Marist; Luke Muzikowski, Hope; Matthew Page, Brother Rice; Anna Therese Petersen, Metea Valley; Kaylie Pries, Timothy Christian; Peter Pujals, Loyola; Michael Rappleye, Barrington; Trevor Rolette, Tinley Park; Zachary Strittmatter, Batavia
Updated: April 8, 2013 6:09AM
Jack Keelan already has one honor as the Class 3A state champion in boys cross country.
Now the senior has added another award, this one coming outside his athletic comfort zone as a runner.
The LaGrange Park resident was one of 26 students — 13 boys and 13 girls — named to the IHSA’s All-State Academic team, which included 450 nominees from across the state. The St. Ignatius student will be recognized with other Academic team members at a banquet April 15 in Bloomington.
As part of the application process, Keelan wrote an essay about “What four years of cross country and track have taught me.” In it, he listed how he had learned to manage his time, develop leadership, become grounded and appreciate more things in his life.
Keelan signed with Stanford and hopes to study engineering. He chose the Cardinal over Georgetown, Wisconsin and Notre Dame.
“It was an incredibly hard decision,” Keelan said. “I tried to take as much time as I could.”
Since each high school nominated one boy and one girl, Keelan already felt good about just representing St. Ignatius. He received the news from school officials while on a four-day church-sponsored retreat in Northbrook.
St. Ignatius was the only school in the state to have both its representatives make the All-State Academic team. Like Keelan, Emily Beltran also competed on the Wolfpack’s cross country and track and field teams.
Nominees needed to be involved in an IHSA activity for the last two years and demonstrate outstanding citizenship. Keelan was not assured of being nominated by St. Ignatius since soccer player Brandon Medina was named Illinois Gatorade player of the year in the fall.
Keelan is preparing to return to track and field in the spring, where he is the defending state runner-up in the 3,200-meter run and seventh-place finisher in the 1,600.
After last cross country season, Keelan placed 26th in the Nike Nationals in Portland, Ore.