Record Setting NW Jr Regionals
Coach Richard Parr has kept the focus this spring on the District Championships that took place this past weekend. “I was so impressed by the commitment shown by the rowers throughout the season, and it paid off on race day. Really brave efforts all around, and it was great to see so many of our athletes performing so well under pressure.”
One part high-octane athletic contest and another part beach party, the competition is held each year on Lake Vancouver — a shallow avian sanctuary a short distance from the Columbia River. The ospreys, eagles, herons and egrets didn’t know what to make of the dueling musical tributes between the 20 clubs and 1400 rowers represented. But after a spring of regattas the juniors from different clubs have gained mutual respect and friendship contributing to an extraordinary aura of teamwork, camaraderie and sportsmanship.
The Vashon Junior Crew statistics were simply extraordinary: 44 races entered with 37 “top three” finishes – 18 first, 11 second and 8 third places. 15 rowers and one coxswain are heading to Nationals on Lake Melton outside Oak Ridge, Tennessee the weekend of June 7 – 9 to compete in 8 separate events – both the number of rowers and events are club records. In the overall team rankings, Vashon Junior Women placed 4th and the Men 5th.
Vashon’s Nationals bound crew members are Kallie Heffernan and Kirsten Girard who took gold in the women’s double and were also joined by Anna Ripley and Hannah Russell in the women’s quad placing third.
Kaitlin Carter and Shannon Lipe took silver in the women’s lightweight double and then were joined by two novices – eighth grade stroke Emily Milbrath and Leanne Anderson – and coxswain Ally Clevenger to take another silver in the women’s lightweight four.
Gus Magnuson and Tate Gill also medaled in two national qualifying races taking a bronze in the men’s double and a silver in the men’s quad joined by Jacob Plihal and Isaiah Mosser-Rohe.
Nathaniel Petram and Baxter Call took silver in the lightweight men’s double and the national-bound team was completed with Anne Gaspers taking a bronze in the women’s single.
First place finishers in finals that are not going to nationals were Ella McConnell and Kai Li Scheer in the women’s third varsity double, Tea Schafer and Leanne Anderson in the women’s novice double, Lorenzo Higuera and Forrest Miller in the men’s novice double, Alexander Wright and Liam McConnell in the men’s third varsity double, Julian Baca and Ethan Rumberg in the men’s third varsity double and Nathaniel Petram and Baxter Call in the men’s second varsity double.
In an unusual finish the women’s high school eight tied for first with Holy Names Academy.