It was late spring, May twentieth to be exact. All eight of us sat in the catch position waiting for the three words that would set us off against five other anxious teams. “Ready.
ROW!”, and we were off. “Half, half, three-quarters, full, power 20!”, Blair screamed as we jetted down our lane. At 1500 meters, a ferry crossed our course creating a massive wave. We didn’t panic; we didn’t lose form.
Colliding with the wave filled our 8 man boat half full, but we pulled though taking first place. Teamwork, determination, focus; this is why I want to row in college.Rowing has been my favorite pastime for as long as I could remember. Canoeing, kayaking, and white water rafting are some activities my father would plan on vacation,knowing that I would be content for the rest of the trip. When I heard that my school was developing a Crew team my sophomore year, I knew I had to get involved.
My first year was in an 8 man boat- staying in sync with 7 other people was not easy- but we learned to swing together to win a few medals, including a first place award at West Point. Being a first year team and not being a prestegious private school, yet competing against 100 year old programs, we surprised everyone with our talent and skill. Soon we were taking first, second, or third place in most of our races, making our coaches, parents, and ourselves proud. My second year, I was one of four selected from forty girls to take the bow seat in the new varsity four boat. This year we had real competition, but between my boat mates and I, we had enough strength and determination to pull a truck. At each race we tactfully pulled ahead of the every boat; except St. Anthony’s. Knowing that their team had year-round Crew program, us remaining three (one other graduated) took the initiative to make our boat a year-round team.
We joined the Connetquot River Rowing Association for the summer, ran Cross Country to keep in shape until Christmas, and are presently enduring a hardcore training schedule until our final high school season begins. When we are in the boat, we are one single unit- this unit is going to take St. Anthony’s down this year.
Being a part of a team is unlike anything else. Since my freshman year, I have successfully completed seven Varsity and three Junior Varsity seasons. If nothing else, my team needs me to keep with it, to get better grades, to have a good attitude and to be there for them as they are there for me.
I feel that my team has helped me understand what it means to truly work together and take initiative. When I asked people some things they’ll remember about me from high school they said long hair and Phish- but second to that they said the dedication to my Crew team.