Huge Congratulations to our very own Paul Ickes and Ray Crowley on their induction into the Chicago Catholic League Hall of Fame. This is an incredible accomplishment and so very well deserved. They will be inducted on April 25th at the Chicago Catholic League Banquet.
For those of you who would like to show your support and celebrate these two men, the banquet will be held April 25 at the Crystal Sky Banquet Hall, 7941 W. 47th Street, McCook, IL, (one mile west of Harlem Ave.). Cocktails will begin at 6 p.m. with dinner and induction ceremony to follow at 7p.m.
Ray Crowley ‘71
Ray Crowley was not only a major contributor to the Crusader baseball team, but he was also a three-year member of the football team, and a two-year member of the basketball team. During his baseball career at Brother Rice, Ray was named to the All-Catholic League All-Star team. In both his junior and senior seasons, the varsity Crusader baseball squad won the Catholic League Championship. Ray went on to continue his baseball career at Lewis University. As a member of the Flyer baseball squad, he garnered many accomplishments. With his stellar play, Crowley earned the honor of being a two-time collegiate All-American in 1974 and 1975. Ray played a key role for the Flyers when the team won the title as NAIA National Champions for the1974 and1975 seasons. During those same two championship campaigns, Ray was selected an NAIA World Series All-Star. Ray finished his career at Lewis being ranked 6th for all-time homerun leaders, 19th for doubles, 2nd for triples, 7th for RBI’s, and 20th for runs scored. In the 1975 Major League baseball draft, Ray was selected in the 25th round by the Montreal Expos. Ray played professional baseball for seven years. In the Rookie League (Pioneer League) he was the batting champion with a .338 average. While playing Double A, he was a southern League All-Star in 1978 and 1979. In the Montreal Expos system, Crowley played alongside Tim “Rock” Raines and Terry Francona. He also faced the likes of Cubs former pitching coach Larry Rothschild. Ray was inducted in the Lewis Athletic Hall of Fame in 1990.
Brother Paul Ickes, CFC – Coach
A graduate of St. Agnes Grade School and St. Laurence High School in 1982, Paul Ickes entered the formation program of the Edmund Rice (Irish) Christian Brothers right after high school. As a thirty-two year member of the Edmund Rice Christian Brothers, Brother Paul was stationed at Brother Rice H.S. for a total of twenty-five years. In addition to his indoor and sand volleyball coaching duties, he was the campus minister, KAIROS director and leader, director and teacher for the peer ministry program, Circle of Champions director/ director of the annual Circle of Champions homecoming announcement ceremony and event, and Intramural sand volleyball moderator. In the fall of 1992, Brother Paul, Brother Jay Toole, CFC, and current head coach Dan Dwyer ’88 spearheaded the effort to add indoor boys’ volleyball as Brother Rice’s 14th interscholastic sport. In 2010, Brother Paul began the sand volleyball program at Brother Rice —another first in Illinois. During his indoor career, Brother Rice captured 10 Chicago Catholic League titles, 16 IHSA Regional titles, 5 IHSA Sectional titles and Elite Eight appearances, and a 3rd place finish at the IHSA State Championship in 2004. Brother Paul and his staff captured the Tony Lawless Award for Outstanding Coaching in the Chicago Catholic League 11 times along with Coach of the Year honors by the Southtown in 2006. The first boys’ volleyball coach in Illinois history to reach the 500-win mark, Brother Paul, or “Bro,” finished the spring, 2014, season with a career volleyball record of 545 wins, 248 losses, and 2 ties for a winning percentage of nearly .700. Brother Paul and Brother Rice volleyball have supported numerous volleyball charitable events over the years- Digging for Donna, Volleyball for Charity benefiting Park Lawn, and the Reverse Co-Ed Tourney as part of the 1st Annual “Weish-Fest” benefitting the Andrew Weishar Foundation. Paul served as President of the Illinois High School Volleyball Coaches Association (2010-2014), volleyball moderator for both the Chicago Catholic League and the South Side Boys Volleyball League for grade school boys, and director of the Illinois High School Summer Sand Volleyball League and Tournament. A few highlights of Paul’s career include the team’s first varsity win during the inaugural year in 1993 vs. St. Francis de Sales, the ride to 3rd in state in 2004, return trips to state in 2006, 2007, and 2008, and the magical trip to state in 2012.