Meet the Athlete: Stefano Giovenelli


Mya Stanberry

Senior Stefano Giovannelli strides over to play his position as Wide-Receiver Sept. 16. Giovannelli is proud of his team’s growth and determination.

Anna Williams

Who or what has been your biggest inspiration so far throughout your athletic career?

In the last couple of years, my biggest inspiration has been my mom. She was diagnosed with ALS two years ago, and it has been her and my thing that, as she gets weaker, I get stronger. So, she is kind of my why — like, why I do all this.


What drew you to the program at the University of St. Thomas?

My dad has taught at the University of St. Thomas for the past eight years, so we have been going to the games ever since he started teaching there. Then, my brother also decided to go there and is currently a sophomore at the university. So, just having that family connection there was a major draw. After my mom was diagnosed, I knew that I wanted to stay close to home. Now that UST has changed to D1, being able to play at the highest level with all of those other factors was what made it a clear choice. For me, if I was able to play, I knew I wanted to do it there.


With respect to your successes and the effort you have put in to accomplish all you have, what are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the way I have been able to help my teammates out. In doing things on my own, I have seen the growth that can come, but through encouraging and helping my teammates out, I often also find ways to support them and can see what they can work on as well. I think that helps our team and contributes to our bond.


Do you have any advice for athletes who look up to you?

If you want to do it, just put the time in. My dad says this: “Keep the most important thing the most important thing.” So, whatever that means for you. If it means putting in extra time in the weight room, if it means coming out when no one else is around and working, (and) working hard and working on yourself. Just do whatever it takes.


As a 3-Sport All-Conference Athlete, what things do you take away from one sport and apply to another?

In baseball, so much can not go your way, so always staying as positive as you can is important. Football is a demanding sport, so focusing on recovery and on pacing yourself is a main takeaway. Basketball is a big team sport, so connecting with teammates and getting closer is something that I do think I put into my other two sports.


I imagine there is a lot of stress that comes with competing at these levels. Before games, do you have a hype song or pre-game ritual that helps you to center yourself or prepare for competition?

It’s a very recent one but drinking a white Monster before games. It’s a pretty good energy source and kind of my good luck charm. However, I try not to get too superstitious.


What are you most looking forward to this year?

For the last couple of years, the class of 2022 has been pretty dominant. So, I would say I am excited to see other people shine and for some of the younger guys to get a chance to play, to show what they can do.


Do you have a favorite sports experience or memory?

I would say at last year’s Waconia game. When we were down by 14 points in the last minute and a half, we came back and won by one. That was big. Beating Minnehaha Academy last year in basketball was pretty fun also. And, of course, going to state for baseball—that was amazing.