Illinois Area

THIS IS YOUR OPPORTUNITY TO CHOOSE A STUDENT ATHLETE WITH A FIGHTING SPIRIT IN YOUR COMMUNITY.

MAKE YOUR SELECTION BELOW!

Illinois

Area

THIS IS YOUR OPPORTUNITY TO CHOOSE A STUDENT ATHLETE WITH A FIGHTING SPIRIT IN YOUR COMMUNITY.

MAKE YOUR SELECTION BELOW!

MEET THE NOMINEES:

SELECT THE TABS BELOW TO LEARN MORE.

School: Granite City Senior High School 

Fighting Spirit Story:

Chase Reeves has displayed the Fighting Spirit throughout his life that started the day he was born. Because of his congenital heart defects, he has had to undergo several surgeries, the first which was performed when he was only 8 weeks old. After playing and excelling at sports, Chase and his family noticed he would get tired more quickly than the other kids. So, when he was 13 years old, Chase was told he would have to have his pulmonary valve replaced. Even though Chase will have to constantly monitor his condition and have a scar down his chest to remind him of his journey, having to overcome these physical hurdles has taught Chase to work hard and never give up. Chase has been on the varsity soccer, football, and golf teams at Granite City Senior High School and has never let his condition hinder his drive to succeed. 

School: Elgin High School

Fighting Spirit Story:

As a cheerleader her whole life, Jasmin Sithammavong is the one who is used to cheering on others. Now as she fights for her life, it is her teammates and coaches that cheer for Jasmin. Jasmin was diagnosed with leukemia in February of last year and has undergone many doses of chemotherapyEven though she has been in a wheelchair, Jasmin will visit her team when she is feeling good and was even able to attend Senior Night. Her journey has not been an easy one, but her friends and family are cheering for her all the way back into the air and flying for her team. 

School: Saint Ignatius College Prep

Fighting Spirit Story:

Being a trailblazer means doing something that has never been done before. For Livia Hoffman, it means to succeed in a male-dominated sport. Livia is a member of the wrestling team at Saint Ignatius College Prep and is a two-time IHSA Sectional qualifier and two-time IWCOA Girls State Qualifier. Livia not only excels on the mat but is known for her character, drive to succeed in the classroom, and is a great representative for female athletes alike.

 

School: Glenwood High School 

Fighting Spirit Story:

Kate Matthews was her team’s leading scorer and was chosen as the team captain due to her leadership qualities and competitive nature prior to suffering a torn ACL. An injury like that can be devastating for any high school athlete. However, Kate was determined to not only recover but to become an even better player than she was prior to her injury. Due to her work ethic and dedication to her physical therapy, Kate was medically cleared to compete in her senior season. Even with her season being limited because of COVID-19, she took advantage of every opportunity to be the best player and teammate. She was named to the CS8 Conference First-Team as well as being Honorable Mention All-State.  

School: Anna-Jonesboro

Fighting Spirit Story:

Marlee Smith began her high school athletic career at Anna-Jonesboro High School making the varsity golf and basketball teams as a freshman. However, after being diagnosed with T-Cell Leukemia in 2019, her athletic career was sidelined as she began the fight against cancer with the determination to return to her teams. Marlee was able to beat cancer and is back to playing the sports she loves but during her battle, she also found joy in helping others. She organized a toy drive for kids at the children’s hospital and continues to serve as an inspiration to others.  

School: Newman Central Catholic

Fighting Spirit Story:

Karlie Hey is a senior at Newman Central High School and is currently fighting Ewing Sarcoma. Since August of last year, Karlie has undergone 10 chemotherapy treatments and surgery that removed the cancer as well as having a hip replacement. Karlie has three treatments left then she will be able to ring the bell to signal that she is cancer-free. Karlie is known in her community for her positivity as well as being the most caring and humble who has fought against cancer and won. 

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