Generation Gap Tennis Tournament Planned for Oct. 17

JSerra’s first annual Generation Gap Tennis Tournament will be held Saturday, Oct. 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the JSerra athletics tennis and aquatics facilities.Tennis

The day is sure to be full of food, friends, and family fun.

Participation is $50 per team. In addition to a traditional tennis tournament, there will be “mini-tennis” for youngsters, a wood racquet “side” tournament, volleyball, water polo, and water relays.

The tournament will be run in round robin format with semifinals and finals (open and novice). Participants are asked to provide an item for the potluck: Last names A-G, salad; H-N, chips, dip, and other snacks; O-Z, dessert.

Tri-tip barbecue will be served as the main course. Those interested in participating in the afternoon activities and potluck will be charged $10 per person ($5 for kids 10 and under).

Contact Kirk Orahood to register or with questions at

The registration deadline is October 12.

JSerra Football Considered for Pac-5 Ranking

In a JSerra Catholic High School first, the undefeated Lions football team was considered this week for a spot in the Orange County Register’s top 10.

The Lions football team has never been ranked in the Pac-5 division, said coach Jim Hartigan. This year, the team is off to a fast start, winning all three preseason games by wide margins.

The Lions beat Palos Verdes, Huntington Beach and El Modena. On Friday, they play at Pacifica High School in Garden Grove. League play begins Oct. 16 against Santa Margarita Catholic High School.

To view the Register’s rankings, click here.

JSerra Poised For Its Best Year Ever

CEO Frank Talarico sent the following letter to the JSerra community last week.

Frank Talarico
Frank Talarico

Last year was a big year for JSerra Catholic High School. We won our first Trinity League championships, graduated our largest senior class (including our first National Merit Scholarship winner) and contributed to the community in hundreds of notable ways.

In my latest Capistrano Dispatch column, I predicted that our seventh year would be our best yet.

I’m pleased to report we’re already on our way. We learned this week that Nicholas Stropko is a National Merit Scholarship semi-finalist and that 33 of his classmates earned Advanced Placement Awards. JSerra also recently obtained important new financing that positions the school for long-term fiscal health.

We’ve also had a strong start in athletics. Our football team is 3-0, and our boys water polo and girls cross country teams are ranked among the best in the county. We also welcomed world-class new boys basketball, swimming and girls water polo coaches.

And then there’s our baseball team. Senior Bret Dahlson became the eighth Lion from last year’s Trinity League championship team to earn a big-time college scholarship. He announced last week that he’ll join Colton Plaia at Loyola Marymount.

I hope you’ve had a chance to visit our new Web site. We’ve received tremendous feedback regarding its look and functionality. As always, please visit JSerra Blog or our new Web site for the latest campus news and announcements.

It was fantastic to see many of you at our Welcome Mass and Fiesta, and we look forward to sharing more good news later this week at Back to School Night.

Best regards,


JSerra Hires Former NHL Stars to Coach Ice Lions Hockey Team

JSerra Catholic High School announced today that David Karpa and Guy Hebert, two long-time stars of the Anaheim Ducks, will lead the Ice Lions coaching staff during its second season.

David Karpa
David Karpa

David Karpa, the veteran defenseman, is the squad’s new head coach. Retired NHL all-star Guy Hebert will serve as goalie coach. Joining them on the coaching staff is strength and conditioning coach Joshua Aycock.

“It’s an honor and thrill for me to be involved in sharing my passion for ice hockey with the next generation of players, and I’m particularly excited about leading the sport’s growth in Southern California,” said Karpa, who lives in Newport Beach. “We have an outstanding group of scholar-athletes dedicated to their sport and their community.”

Hebert  who was Karpa’s teammate on the Ducks, said he was impressed with the values JSerra instills in its students and scholar-athletes.

“My hope is that I can help teach the scholar-athletes not only to a better player on the ice but to be a better person off the ice,” he said. “Many challenges that athletes face in competition help mold their character. He also said he looks forward to working with the goalies.

Guy Hebert
Guy Hebert

“Goalies are often overlooked so I hope I can help give them a good base for their further development,” he said.

JSerra made history last year when it partnered with the Ducks to become the inaugural team in the first-ever Orange County high school ice hockey league. The team travelled to compete in tournaments as far away as Canada, Ohio and Chicago, plus competed against Southern California Amateur Hockey Association teams. It was the only high school team.

This year, the league expanded to include JSerra’s Trinity League rivals Santa Margarita Catholic High School. The Ice Lions will face off against their Santa Margarita rivals for the first time on September 26th at The Rinks at Anaheim at 7:30pm.

The game will mark an important step in the sport’s evolution. Another step will come at Thanksgiving when the Ice Lions compete in the prestigious Loyola Academy Thanksgiving Tournament in Chicago and travel to south Florida to face the defending state champion North Broward High School on October 4th.

In other sports news at JSerra, Julie Swail-Ertel, of Irvine, a rare two-sport Olympian, was hired to direct the aquatics program and coach the girls’ water polo team. And Joedy Gardner is the new head boys basketball coach. He was a private trainer to elite players, including several NBA stars.

“We remain committed to providing all our students with a world-class educational experience,” said Frank Talarico, JSerra’s CEO.

Karpa played for the Ducks from 1994-98. Among the highlights of his career was his decisive goal in the seventh game of the 1997 Western Conference semi-finals against Phoenix Coyotes.

Hebert, of Newport Beach, was the first pick in the 1993 expansion draft. He retired in 2001 and still ranks first or second among Ducks leaders in every goalkeeping category.

Just six years old, JSerra’s $110-million facilities and $40 million athletics complex are regarded as among the finest in the region. Last year the school won its first Trinity League championships in boys soccer, boys lacrosse and baseball. Baseball coach Brett Kay was the Orange County Register’s Coach of the Year.

For more about JSerra Catholic High School, please visit

Varsity Team

JSerra Grad Leads La Salle To Women’s Soccer Victory

PHILADELPHIA, PA – One game after scoring her first collegiate goal, JSerra Catholic High School graduate Erin Brennan scored a game-winner to lead La Salle’s Women’s soccer team to a 3-1 victory over visiting Vermont during a recent home game.

Click here to read more.

And for her collegiate profile, visit here.

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JSerra Student A National Merit Scholarship Semi-Finalist

In another example of academic accomplishment at JSerra Catholic High School, senior Nicholas Stropko was named a National Merit Scholarship semi-finalist.

Nicholas Stropko
Nicholas Stropko

He will compete for one of 8,200 scholarships awarded next spring to the nation’s brightest and most promising students.

In May, co-valedictorian Lexi Crommett became JSerra’s first National Merit Scholarship winner.

“Congratulations to Nicholas on his outstanding scholastic accomplishments,” said JSerra CEO Frank Talarico.

Earlier this week, JSerra announced that 34 students earned Advanced Placement Scholar awards. Stropko was an “AP Scholar with Honor.”

Read the Orange County Register’s story about the honor here.