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Former Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva Former Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Former Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva Former Mother McAuley star Hannah Swiatek (right) smiles and walks off the court with Justene Charlesworth after a recent University of St. Francis victory over Cardinal Stritch. Photo by Jeff Vorva

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College Report: McAuley grad Swiatek plays hero for St. Francis

By Jeff Vorva
Staff Writer

Hannah Swiatek comes off the bench for the University of St. Francis and is averaging 3.1 points per game.

But when called on for the biggest shot of her college career, the 5-foot-8 junior guard from Oak Lawn delivered.

Swiatek scored the winning basket in a wild 99-97 overtime road victory over Oliver Nazarene on Jan. 6.

Justene Charleworth was on fire and had a career-high 39 points, and many thought she was going to get the ball for the final shot. If not her, then maybe Jordan Pyle, who had 23 points.

But Swiatek found the ball in her hands.

“I wasn’t expecting to get the ball,” she said. “Jordan and Justine were having great games. They were looking for one of those two players. Jordan was under the basket double-teamed. Nobody was guarding me. I don’t start and they probably didn’t think that I was going to get the ball.

“My coach (John McGinty) was like ‘come get the ball.’ I was so confused I thought he was just saying that to fake out the other team. I got the ball with five seconds left and I crossed over and went to the basket. I don’t even remember it. But it was awesome.”

Swiatek, who played high school basketball at Mother McAuley, is a nursing major and has been busy with clinicals during this season.

Some days she had class in the morning followed by practice, working out and film later in the day, and sometimes had days where she woke up at 4 a.m. for all-day clinicals. There were weeks she had three exams. All-night studying has been common.

“I have a planner to keep everything straight,” she said. “I have a white board in my dorm room and write down all of the important things that I have to get done. And sometimes I’ll have reminders on my phone.”

 

Schu-in
Former Mother McAuley star Katie Schumacher-Cawley has been named the third Penn State women’s volleyball coach in the program’s 46-year history.

The past four years, she was an assistant at the school with Russ Rose.

After her successful career at McAuley, Schumacher-Cawley played at Penn State from 1998-2002 and was a two-time All-American. She also played basketball for two seasons.

“Being chosen as the next head coach at my alma mater is a dream come true,” she said in a news release. “The love I have for this storied university, passionate community and all things blue and white is unmatched.”

Schumacher-Cawley is a former head coach at the University of Illinois-Chicago and Penn.

 

Cougars get back to work
The St. Xavier men’s and women’s basketball teams were back on the court on Saturday in Chicago after missing some time.

The women’s team, which had not played since Jan. 6, beat the University of St. Francis 71-66 in a battle of Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference powers. The Cougars improved to 10-1 in the league and are second in the league to St. Ambrose (12-1) while St. Francis (10-2) is in third.

McKenna Zobel popped in 18 points to lead the Cougars while Alyssa Crenshaw came off the bench to score 15.

The men, who haven’t played since Dec. 31, didn’t show much rust in an 88-68 win over St. Francis to improve to 9-9.

Jaden King led the Cougars with 25 points and Joshua Evans added 21.

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