IN THE SPOTLIGHT
The most appreciative son in Glencoe on Father’s Day last weekend had to be Quinn Roddy.
The 2017 Loyola Academy graduate and three-year varsity lacrosse player destroyed parts of the wooden fence in his family’s back yard at least 12 times back in his middle school years. Some of the shots the future Ramblers attackman had taken at a lax net found indefensible pickets rather than the back of the net.
“My dad [Joe Roddy] and I’d go to Home Depot and then come back and fix the fence together,” recalls the 5-foot-11, 170-pounder. “My dad pretended to be mad at me, but he was happy I was working on my shot.
“I eventually tied empty water and Gatorade bottles to the corners of the net and aimed at those as I worked to improve my accuracy.”
Exhibit B, in the case for Coolest Dad of the Year: Joe Roddy, huge Chicago Cubs fan, wakes up Quinn Roddy, huge Chicago Cubs fan, on the morning of Game 1 of the World Series last fall.
The son is informed he has to get ready for a road trip — to Cleveland. The son and his father attend the Indians-Cubs World Series opener together.
The Year 2016 was a special one for the Roddys, and not just because the Cubs emerged as World Series champions for the first time in 108 years. Quinn Roddy — the Ramblers’ fourth attackman, behind three outstanding seniors — played for the Illinois High School Lacrosse Association (IHSLA) state champions, with his shining moments occurring in a 15-4 defeat of Grayslake North in a state semifinal.
Roddy scored three goals and assisted on two others.
“Quinn did not get much playing time as a junior, but you would not have known it in that game,” says classmate Tommy Schmitz, a middie on this year’s IHSLA state runner-up LA squad. “Quinn was having a great time out there on the field, playing loose in what turned out to be his breakout game.”
Roddy, a DePauw (Indiana) University recruit, poured in three more goals in the Ramblers’ 9-6 loss to New Trier in the IHSLA state title game at Stevenson on June 3. One of five captains, he ended up as one of the Ramblers’ top scorers and earned US Lacrosse All-America status after a 17-1 season.
“Really crafty with his lefty shot,” Schmitz says. “Quinn has a great sidearm shot, and he was good, really good, at finding his teammates.
“Great leader,” he adds. “And really friendly. All season he kept the guys loose, knew when we needed to laugh.”
But Roddy’s favorite all-time team continues to be his family. Joe — whose father, also named Joe, died in early 2016 as a true-blue Cubs fan and a true-maroon-and-gold LA boys lacrosse fan — played baseball at LA (Class of ’82) and at College of the Holy Cross (Massachusetts) and married Karen, who attended Nazareth Academy in La Grange Park and performed as a member of a water ski team in Wisconsin. Quinn’s other grandparents — Mary Jane, Gene and Kay — adored watching and fully supporting the former fence wrecker.
Quinn Roddy has an older brother, Fitz, and younger siblings in Gavin (a sophomore-to-be at LA) and Aubrey (a seventh-grader this fall). Fitz — a slot receiver for LA’s Class 8A state runner-up football team in 2013 — attends Miami (Ohio) University.
“I’m super close with all of my siblings, and I attribute a lot of that to Fitz,” says Roddy, who intends to focus on business and marketing in DePauw’s Management Fellow Program. “Fitz has always been good about stepping in and settling us down if any of us is arguing with another.”
Quinn Roddy’s leadership style on lacrosse fields in the spring mirrored his older brother’s approach to mediation.
“I never yelled at my teammates,” Roddy says. “That wouldn’t have been me; I preferred to help them through things, talk with them, and what was important to me more than anything else was doing what I could to get my teammates involved when I had the ball.”
Roddy had been a hockey player, as a center, for several years when he first played in a Winnetka lacrosse league as a fourth-grader.
Baseball, to the son of a former second baseman?
“A little slow for me,” admits Roddy, also a football player in grade school. “I needed something more upbeat, with more contact, more scoring.
“It was my dad who actually persuaded me to try lacrosse. He knew about the physicality of the sport. He knew I’d like it.”
Roddy’s life as a hockey player essentially ended on his first day at Loyola Academy in the fall of 2013. Ramblers lacrosse coach Rob Snyder, for one, was thrilled with Roddy’s decision to become laser-focused on lacrosse.
“Dynamic dodger, fast and athletic,” Snyder says of the Rambler who scored half of his team’s goals in his final prep lacrosse game.
In the summer before the start of his first year in college, Roddy, among other activities and responsibilities, will listen to country music — his favorite artist is Eric Church; his favorite Church song is “Springsteen” — and teach golf to youngsters at Saddle & Cycle Club in Chicago four days a week.
“I was given a whistle to use in case the kids get unruly during a lesson,” Roddy says.
The sound lacrosse player doubles as a sound golf instructor.