Bishop Ireton Inducts Four Individuals and One Team into Athletic Hall of Fame
Congratulations to the 2022 Bishop Ireton Athletic Hall of Fame inductees: Shannon Varner '76 (swimming), Coach Angela Hope-Eskew (cheerleading), the 2014 Girls Lacrosse Team (lacrosse), Lisa Strittmater McLaughlin '99 (softball) and Coach Rick Sofield (lacrosse). They will be officially inducted on Thursday, October 13, 2022 with a reception from 6-7 pm and an induction ceremony at 7 pm. Get tickets here!
Shannon Varner '76 was a four-year member of the varsity swimming team, competing in multiple events but primarily distance freestyle, individual medley, and butterfly. He served as team co-captain in 1976. Also that year, he was awarded a National High School All-America ranking. He was named the Alexandria Sportsman’s Club Swimmer of the Year in both 1975 and 1976. He attended Arizona State University on scholarship and was elected co-captain in 1978 and achieved NCAA All-American status in the 400 Individual Medley and as a member of 800 Freestyle relay teams. Shannon also qualified for the 1980 Olympic Trails in the 400 Individual Medley.
Lisa Strittmatter McLaughlin ‘99 was a four-year starter on the varsity softball team at Bishop Ireton. She regularly played multiple positions during her time at BI. Throughout her high school career, she compiled many awards and accolades including Cardinal North/South Tournament Co-MVP, Cardinal Defensive Player of the Year, Bishop Ireton MVP, two-time 1st Team ALL WCAC, two-time All-State Selection, two-time captain in her junior and senior year, and Alexandria Sportsman’s Club Softball Player of the Year.
Coach Angela Hope-Eskew has coached the Bishop Ireton cheerleading team since 2009. Since her arrival, the Bishop Ireton cheerleading team has over a dozen Regional and Classic 1st place Championship titles. In 2015 she began the Cardinal Winter Blast Cheerleading Competition at Bishop Ireton. This competition hosts the WCAC Schools and local Arlington Diocese schools. Bishop Ireton holds four out of the five, Cardinal Winter Blast first place championships titles. The Cardinal cheerleaders have competed in the Christian Cheerleaders of America's Nationals for the past 13 years and hold seven National Grand Championship titles, including the six most recent competitions (2016-2022). For more than five years, they have captured the coveted Spirit of Competition trophy voted on by all the athletes at Nationals.
Coach Rick Sofield coached the Bishop Ireton girls lacrosse team from 2011-2021. During his time at Bishop Ireton, he led the team to five WCAC championship titles (2014, 2016-2019) and four VISAA state championship titles (2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018). He won more than 77% of his games while coaching at BI and was named a USA Today National Coach of the Year. He guided more than 50 players to NCAA programs around the country.
The 2014 Girls Lacrosse team was one of the winningest and most successful teams in school history. They were nationally ranked and won both the WCAC Championship and the 2014 VISAA State Championship.