On May 21, families and friends will gather at Northwestern University’s Welsh-Ryan Arena to celebrate Evanston Township High School’s Class of 2023 and its varied accomplishments.
Among the thousands of proud seniors, just a few graduates will be moving on to play sports at NCAA Division 1 schools, the highest level of U.S. collegiate sports competition.
“We are very proud of all of our student-athletes and are excited to see them go on to compete at the next level as they represent ETHS and the Evanston community,” said ETHS Athletic Director Chris Livatino. “In order to reach this level, they’ve had to learn to push themselves beyond their comfort zone and work as a team, which are tremendous lessons that will serve them well later in life.”
Here are snapshots of these accomplished student-athletes who will be moving on to play Division 1 sports in college.
Editor’s note: Since this story was originally posted, additional ETHS students joined the Division 1 commit list and we’ve updated the story.
Abrielle Artley – women’s track and field, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
“Something I am looking forward to as I continue my journey as a student-athlete is witnessing my progression in the sport. Seeing myself improve encourages me to work harder, so that I can reach the best of my ability. I’m eager to learn new techniques that will play a role in my improvement. What I loved most about my time at ETHS was not only staying motivated academically, but also staying motivated to do well in track and field. I was surrounded by people who supported me.”
Shayna da Silva – women’s soccer, DePaul University
“I am most excited about meeting new people and athletes at DePaul, as well as playing at a higher level and challenging myself. To say the least, college soccer is definitely going to be an adjustment. Everyone is faster and stronger, and along with playing against 22- and 23-year-olds, I am going to have to push myself and find a way to succeed. I look forward to competing and growing as a player in the years to come. Playing sports at ETHS has taught me a new idea of what it means to play for your team, and work together to achieve great things. Our team is so close, and everyone gets along extremely well.”
Miles Granjean – men’s track and field, University of Iowa
“I’m really excited to see what I can really do in track and field in general as well as hurdling. I have barely any experience and now I have the opportunity to be under some pretty incredible veterans of the sport. I’m gonna miss my teammates the most. The team environment of our program makes it so much more fun than it already is. There’s never a dull day at practice or a meet and I think that’s what keeps most guys there and committed, is being able to do what you love as well as hangout with some great guys. Group sports has taught me how to be a leader as well as how to follow and understand directions.”
Dylan Groff – men’s lacrosse, Rutgers University
“I am most excited about playing lacrosse at such a high level, being a part of the Rutgers Lacrosse Program, and playing in the Big 10. I’m excited to play with and against some of the best players in the world. I’ve always loved being part of a team. I’ve learned how to work well with others for a shared goal, to overcome setbacks, to train hard to get better, and to grow as a leader.”
Jordin Kadiri – women’s soccer, DePaul University
“I am excited to play at the next level because soccer has been part of my life for as long as I can remember and I have lots of love for it. I am also excited about being part of a new program and seeing how I can bring part of myself and my style of play into said program. Meeting new people and being in a slightly unfamiliar area is also something I’m looking forward to!
“I will definitely miss the sense of community that ETHS has. I think compared to a lot of other schools, ETHS’ diversity and its way of running things at the school makes it feel familylike. … Group sports, specifically at ETHS, have given me a home outside of my own home. It has given me a family that I know will encourage me and hold me accountable. I love being surrounded by a group of girls that I know want the best for me just as I want the best for them. Group sports have taught me selflessness and how to work with people effectively to reach an end goal!”
Aidan Klein – men’s volleyball, Loyola University Chicago
“I am really excited to continue playing volleyball at a high level and get to know the team better at Loyola! I will definitely miss the team. The guys are a lot of fun to be around and make the experience so much more enjoyable. I think as a team you play a lot better when you are enjoying the game, and the chemistry we have built really enables that. Team sports have really taught me about perseverance. When you are down, you could stay down pretty easily. But the best teams fight until the last point no matter the score.”
Hank Liss – baseball, Belmont University
“I’m excited to play D1 for the level of competition, because I know each player I face was also one of the best on their high school team. I’m looking forward to being a part of a successful program, and hopefully making an impact on it for the team and for the school. Coaches’ impact is what I’ll miss most about Evanston, not just baseball but football too, every coach wanted the best for me and knew my goals, so they pushed me to my limits. I’m thankful for what Evanston has done for me to be on this path and I’m sure it will be a fun next four years.”
Adriana Merriam – women’s soccer, Baylor University
“On the athletics side, I’m excited about continuing to play the sport I love at a very high competitive level, as well as furthering my athletic abilities and soccer skills. I’m also very excited to meet my new teammates and be able to bond with them and play the sport we all love together. On the academic side, I’m excited to attend an amazing university that offers very competitive programs and courses in what I want to study.
“What I loved most about my time at ETHS was being able to learn in such an open environment and make connections with so many people. Soccer has taught me so much, including but certainly not limited to leadership, discipline, accountability, the rewards of hard work, grit, controlling emotions, determination, how to deal with adversity, not complaining when something is difficult, getting out of my comfort zone, pushing through pain, working hard when people are and aren’t watching, and so much more.”
Patrick Osilaja – men’s soccer, Eastern Illinois University
“My dream has always been to play D1 soccer while attending college. I am excited about meeting new teammates and creating new brotherhoods. I had a great soccer experience at ETHS. The bond I had with my teammates is what made it all so special. Soccer is more than just a sport. It has taught me so many valuable lessons in life as well as providing me with leadership, determination and the willpower to succeed. I have learned to celebrate the wins and accepted the losses which have made me stronger. I feel it has prepared me for continuing my love for playing soccer while getting my college education.”
Gabriel Rosen – football, Valparaiso University
“I am most excited to get to play the sport I love while also getting a degree. I get to keep the team aspect of everything and keep a routine, which has always helped me a lot. I will definitely miss my teammates the most because I got to see them every day even when football had nothing to do with it. I’ve also been playing sports with some of them since I started and it’s cool to see them all going places to play. Group sports have taught me to rely on and trust other people, especially in football because if one person doesn’t do their job then the whole play could go sideways.”
What a wonderful article, the city of Evanston is very proud! Congratulations!
Congrats and good luck to all ETHS student athletes moving on to D1!
You forgot Anna Marks
You missed Jordin Kadiri who will be playing soccer at DePaul!
Great story. Proud of them and ETHS
Wonderful story, BLC. Please keep up this excellent reporting on our ETHS student athletes! Best.