Greensboro Rowers Shine at State Championships

HPG Rowing enjoyed great success at the inaugural North Carolina Youth Rowing Championships. Rowers from the High Point Greensboro club won state championships in 7 out of the 14 events the club entered. Pictured here is the middle school squad or rowers.

High Point, NC – Greensboro Crew enjoyed a terrific day of racing at the North Carolina Youth Rowing Championships at Oak Hollow Lake on Saturday.

Racing with High Point under the HPG Rowing umbrella, Greensboro rowers won state championships in the boys U15 eight-oared event and the Middleschool Division I eight oared event.

Ben Huitt is all smiles after winning his second state championship.

The HPG boys U15 eight led from wire to wire over the 1,500m championship race course, ultimately finishing four boat lengths ahead of Triangle Rowing Club of Raleigh. Phillip Sojka steered his crew of stroke Ben Huitt, 7 Henry Parker, 6 Ryan LaPierre, Jeffrey Shroyer, 4 Isaac Gates, Nate Dorn, Keagan OConnell and bow Sarvesh Venkittu to the winning time of 6 minutes 58 seconds.

HPG finished a close second to Triangle Rowing Club in the girls U15 eight-oared event. Coxswain Ella Nichols encouraged her crew of Claire Howard, Charlotte Curri, Sierra, Heer, Kennedi Ratcliffe, Kate Messick, Abby Higgins, Sydney Briggs and Katie Todd all the way down the race course to earn the silver medal ahead of Asheville.

HPG also took home silver in the girls Division II U15 eights final. The crew, steered by Phillip Sojka was comprised of Maura Toole,  Maddie Van Weerdhuizen, Natalie Earnhardt, Ellie Schroeder, Emma Knapp, Elizabeth Parker, Reagan Labiak, and Lia Peace.

In the Middle school Division I final, HPG Rowing showed power and poise as it raced down Oak Hollow Lake in front of Festival Park. Coxswain Ella Nichols’ straight line course left nothing to chance as her crew of Matthew Hronich, Henry Parker, Ryan LaPierre, Jeffrey Shroyer, James Li, Sierra Heer, Ben Huitt and Grace Denenny rowed away from Triangle Rowing Club and Asheville for gold.

Just moments earlier, High Point Greensboro rowers finished 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in the Division II Middle school race. Triangle won and Asheville finished 5th.

Maggie McIntyre steered her crew of Claire Howard, Sarvesh Venkittu, Tyrus Martin, Nate Dorn, Isaac Gates, Keagan OConnell, Holly Spong and Corinne Alt to the silver medal.

Reagan Labiak steered her crew of Kate Messick, Sophie Bene, Abby Shea, Anna Hicks, Aydin Hall, Abby Higgins, Kennedit Ratcliffe and Jamie Atkinson to the bronze.

In a tight finish, Elizabeth Parker steered her crew of Maddie Vanweerdhuizen, Hayden Gentry, Isaac Sparro, Rachel Lesser, Gavyn Azar, Emily Nagel, Natalie Earnhardt, and Roshan Sundaram to the fourth place finish.

Greensboro rowers also race in the women’s novice eight and fours events on Saturday in High Point. Novice events are for first year rowers. The novice 4 rowers also raced in the eight-oared crew comprised of coxswain Ella Nichols, stroke Caroline Dau, Grace Michel, Mary Blake Murphy, Madie Gentry, Kate Cole, Kendall Knight, Hadley Cowan, and bowman Eva Keel.

“Our Greensboro rowers were fabulous on Saturday,” said club founder Gene Kininmonth. “The club has made a successful coaching transition at Lake Brandt and I would like to express my gratitude to coaches Britney Kelley, Molly McDonald, and Patrick Kinsella-McClelland for their contributions to lift this rowing squad to new heights in such a positive manner.”

All our rowers were Oarsome on Saturday. Congratulations to our newly minted state champions and medalists and everyone who participated in their first ever race!

Quackers the Duck made an appearance at the 2017 NC state rowing championships on Oak Hollow Lake.

HPG rowers relax between races at the 2017 state championships in High Point.