The Sodalitas Classica Sancti Marci
(The St. Mark’s Classics Club) organized and hosted its second annual Lion Invitational Certamen
(Latin for “Competition”) over the weekend of January 17, 2020. Dozens of students from across the metroplex answered the call and competed at St. Mark’s over a range of questions about the language, literature, history, culture, and legacy of the Ancient Greek and Roman civilizations. Luke Piazza ’21, Spencer Burke ’22, Axel Icazbalceta ’22, and Jonathan Yin ’22 helped organize the event, tending to all of the details from invitations and room reservations to ordering trophies and procuring over 700 questions for the actual competition.
“Our goal, beyond preparing local teams for upcoming tournaments, is to repay the care that we received at other competitions and all of the effort that goes into organizing events on a large scale,” said Luke Piazza ’21.
In addition to hosting, St. Mark’s teams also competed in the Certamen. Surya Dinesh ’25, Amar Kakkar ’25, Lukas Palys ’25, Adithya Munshi ’25, Nicholas Dickason ’25, and Sam Adams ’23 contributed to a landslide victory at the novice level. Freshmen Akash Munshi, Michael Gao, and Nikhil Dattatreya led the Intermediate team to a third-place finish. Axel Icazbalceta, Spencer Burke, Jonathan Yin, Pablo Arroyo ’20, Andres Arroyo ’20, and Tim Weigman ’21 helped the Advanced team to a third-place finish.
“By showing good sportsmanship and being a good host, we hope that future generations of Marksmen will continue to be inspired to host and compete in more tournaments and, ultimately, to continue to foster a love of classics,” said Spencer Burke.
The Lion Invitational Certamen is designed to promote the value of classical training and to bring likeminded students together for a friendly competition. It also prepares students for the Texas State Junior Classical League’s regional convention held next month at Hebron High School. Latin teachers David Cox and Claire Strange sponsor the Classics Club and helped students organize the Certamen.