By Sean McCrea
Men’s Varsity Rower
It was a good day for LBS novice men and women at San Diego Fall Classic on November 13, 2016. The women’s novice 4+ came home with a bronze medal, beating out 2 of the 5 boats in their race and a time of 28:38, a merly 13 and 14 seconds behind the 1st and 2nd place boats. It is good to see LBS women back on the podium in 2016, we are all very proud of them.
The men’s novice 8+ also brought home a bronze medal Sunday afternoon, beating out 9 of the 12 boats in the race with a time of 18:07. Only Orange Coast College and University of San Diego were able to out race the LBS Novice 8+ that day. The novice 4+ one upped the 8+ and won a silver medal, getting 2nd of 5 in their fours event with a time of 20:56. That would be the second medals of the day for Jason “JD” Noguedo, Taylor Grant Froehlich, Chris Innes, Ehab Elrashidy, and coxswain Rocket Romano. I have had the honor of watching these young fellas grow as rowers and people since they all showed up back in August. Ehab was actually committed to the team in late June/early July, showing up in the morning all summer to workout with coach AC, myself, varsity rower Jacob Munoz, and others in preparation for this season. I am not at all surprised that he is winning medals in some of his first regattas. Rocket was actually a late add for the team. He came into the boathouse after being recruited by Ehab in October. Rocket caught on to the ways of the coxswain extremely fast and has excelled since day 1.
As a varsity rower it is encouraging to see the novices have success. It is a sign of the program moving the right direction with strong recruits and exceptional early development of these recruits. Coach Underwood is doing a fantastic job with the novice men as is Coach Alyssa with the novice women.
Varsity men and women had decent showings in their own rights as well, they just did not end up on the podium as the novices did. For the women, coach Ian entered two 8+’s and two pairs. The competition was tough and the 8+’s got 12th and 14th of 14 in their event with times of 20:12 (raw time for A boat, 21:12 after 1 minute penalty) and 21:58 for the B boat. The pairs got 4th and 5th of 7 in their event. The B pair had a time of 24:51, only 3 seconds behind the bronze medal boat. The A pair had a time of 24:54. An exciting and close race for the 4 women in this race. Women’s team president and bow seat of the women’s varsity B pair, Penny Gallardo, recalled the race being very intense. Her and Megan DeVore were passed by one of Santa Barbara’s pairs (they entered 3 pairs in total) at one point in the race but they never gave up. Penny said she knew from the beginning of the race that if she steered the course better than everyone else, they would have a significant advantage over the other crews. She studied the map with the coxswains and was very familiar with the course. So when Santa Barbara passed them in the first 1000 meters she knew they needed to take the inside of at least two corners on the next turns in order to re-pass them. They were closing in and Santa Barbara did not want to give them the right of way on the inside, so they stayed outside of them before making the first turn. “It was probably the tightest turn of my life!” Penny said. “One more stroke with port pressure and we would have hit the buoy, haha!” After finally getting inside of them during the turn, Penny and Megan blew past Santa Barbara. By the end of the race they had even caught up bow-to-stern with the the Long Beach A boat which was sent off two boats before them. There is a lot of fight in these girls and we’re looking forward to seeing what they can accomplish together as the season progresses.
Men’s varsity entered 4 boats in total, this included an openweight 8+, a lightweight 8+, and two 4+’s. The openweight 8+ got 16th of 21 with a time of 16:55. The lightweight 8+ won gold in their event with a 1st of 1 finish with a time of 17:55. Varsity B4+ finished 15th of 20 with a time of 19:43. The Varsity A4+ finished 12 of 20 with a time of 19:25. All boats are making significant progress and are looking forward to maximizing potential for upcoming regattas.