Growing up as twins, Anne and Alex Begley had two of just about everything. But neither they nor their parents expected they would have two high school graduation ceremonies.
Both Lisle High School seniors, Alex will participate in the school's regular commencement ceremony at 7:30 p.m. Friday in Lisle. Anne, however will have a smaller ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday with four of her graduating Lions teammates who will be participating in the state girls softball tournament in East Peoria.
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"We're close so I'm pretty disappointed that I won't get to march with (Anne)," Alex said Wednesday afternoon. "But her going to state is an awesome accomplishment so I'm really happy for her."
After Friday night's ceremony in Lisle, Alex and his parents, Elizabeth and Michael Begley, will head to East Peoria where Anne and her four teammates will receive their diplomas in a small ceremony in a conference room at the team hotel.
Principal Paul Sullivan said the school has reserved a space at 10 a.m. Saturday at the hotel. Associate Principal and Athletic Director Dan Dillard will facilitate the ceremony that will be attended by members of the Lisle Unit District 202 school board and administration and students' families and friends.
"It's only about a three-hour drive for us so we'll head down to watch Anne graduate and then play the final game," Elizabeth said. "And we're happy to do it. Going to state is special."
Sullivan said the school faced a similar situation in 2007 and also held a special ceremony for senior athletes.
"Once you get beyond sectionals, the times and dates for the games are set and can't be moved," Sullivan said. "But it's really a good problem to have. Our students on the softball team worked many years to be part of the state tournament so it's fortunate that the hard work and success brought about this opportunity for them."
Also graduating Saturday are Stephanie Loconsole, Stephanie Petkovsek, Rebekkah Houda and Tori Harris.
The Lions are scheduled to play Morrison at 4:30 p.m. Friday. If they win, they'll play for the state championship. If they, lose, they'll play for third place.