by Tom Utescher
There was less wind and a good deal more sunshine last Sunday than there was for the debut of the Manny Flick regatta series a week earlier. Scullers and rowers from Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, Penn Charter, Germantown Friends, and Germantown Academy continued to explore their strengths and shortcomings in the last set of races on the Schuylkill before the Easter weekend break.
It was the first Sunday of the season when the race schedule was ordered by gender, with boys’ races in the morning followed by competition for the girls. Area programs were still not ready to launch their novice boys into interscholastic competition, so one of the earliest races with a local flavor was a JV event that yielded third place for a PC quad.
Stephen Flemming was the stroke and ahead of him were Cesar Centeno, Tristan Laurencio, and Cesar’s brother Joey in the bow seat. Charter checked in at five minutes, 17.13 seconds. Roman Catholic won in 4:50.16 and New Jersey’s Monclair High was second in 5:02.28, but the Quakers had the satisfaction of beating out traditional Inter-Ac sculling power Haverford School (5:20.71).
PC’s Ethan Grugan placed fourth in the varsity single in 5:36.65, and this race was won by GA’s Zach Burhart, whose time of 5:18.77 put him a comfortable four seconds ahead of number two Friends Select.
The varsity double came next and brought a third-place outcome for SCH’s Matt Miller and Callum Brazier, who were timed in 5:33.48. Unfortunately, two of the original entries dropped out, leaving a total of just three boats in the contest. Roman won this one in 5:14.92.
Around the noon hour GA and PC each sent out a varsity double, but they were in different flights of the event. In the second of the three sections, the Patriots’ Alex Straus and Carter Seggev wound up fifth in 5:55.21, but Jeremy McDavid and Ethan Ashley of the Quakers fared better in the following race. They finished first in their group, and their time of 5:24.09 was the third-best overall out of 10 entries.
A few events later, SCH ventured into the world of sweep rowing, designating Nelson Crane as coxswain for (stroke to bow) Riley Bakes, John Funchion, Mike Wrede, and Will Tasman. In the first of four flights, the Blue Devils were beaten out for third place by La Salle (5:17.84 to 5:19.12), but they were well ahead of fifth-place Upper Merion (5:29.92). St. Joe’s Prep won with the top overall time of 4:55.45, and their second boat was runner-up in flight one.
Like the boys, local oarswomen passed on the novice events, and the SCH ladies started out their day racing a JV double. Here, the first of two flights proved to be the slower section, and in the second race Jessica Penn and Melanie Bender took second in 6:10.35. Their time was second overall, topping the efforts of two vessels from Inter-Ac rival Agnes Irwin and eclipsed only by the 6:03.66 posted by New Jersey’s Ridgewood High.
Half-an-hour later, a JV quad from Ridgewood came in between PC and GA in the first flight in that category. The Quakers’ Kelsey White, Jean Gleason, Madeline Whitehead, and Sally Stanley won in 5:34.32, and there was a closer finish between Ridgewood (5:42.29) and GA (5:43.73), which was represented by Emma Rapp, Katie Aemisegger, Genna Feirson, and Nina Tang.
The best time in this class, by a considerable margin, was the 5:12.51 posted by Conestoga High School in the second flight. In that race, Penn Charter’s ‘B’ boat took third in 5:53.11 thanks to Emma Grugan, Sharon Zea Rincon, Hunter Smith, and Pam Gonzalez.
In a category with just one race, the lightweight quad, Springside Chestnut Hill won in 5:44.68 with the quartet of Megan Karoly, Sofia Djerassi, Larissa Noble, and Grace Tasman. The Blue Devils were outside in lane five, and next door in four was a Germantown Friends quad containing Sam Pancoe, Becca Genyk, Alice Daeschler, and Tessa Curry.
Finishing second after SCH was Egg Harbor (N.J.) Township (5:46.78), while GFS (5:50.38) was third in the field of five, an encouraging outcome in light of the fact that Daeschler and Pancoe are ninth-grade novices.
The varsity racing for the girls began with a first-place finish in the single by GA’s Jess Zettlemoyer. Crossing the line in 6:08.25, she was challenged by the runner-up from Rutherford (N.J.) High School (6:10.07), but the other three in the race were far behind.
In the first flight of the varsity double, Hatboro Horsham High won comfortably with the fastest overall time (5:54.38), but there was a fierce battle for second place. GFS won it thanks to Sophie Bartholomew and Addie McKenzie, who edged out Baldwin School, 6:02.27 to 6:02.41.
In the first flight of the varsity four, it was a struggle for first place that would be decided by fractions of a second. This was a three-way tussle, and in the end, Radnor High won in 5:40.02 over Germantown Academy and New Jersey’s Belleville High School.
GA’s Sook-Hee Evans (cox), Kathryn Nunes, Sam Felgoise, Hannah Mills, and Gaby Mauro brought their boat to the line in 5:40.13 to take second over the Garden State group, which finished in 5:40.83. However, it was Episcopal Academy which would turn in the best time out of all three flights, winning the second race easily in 5:23.40.
In the lone race for the varsity quads, the six competitors were widely separated. Conestoga cruised through in 5:16.90, and next was Jersey’s Haddon Township, with a mark of 5:27.60. The SCH Blue Devils took third place in 5:34.04 with their line-up of Amanda Miller (stroke), Emma Lutz, Grace Youngren and Lisa Burkhardt, while fourth-place Westfield (N.J.) High didn’t finish up for another 13 seconds.
With a two-week break in the action due to the Easter holiday, area programs will get a chance to work out the kinks, and will be able to solidify their line-ups for the resumption of the Flicks on April 12.