Successful Weekend For NA At Midwest Scholastic Championships

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The NA Tigers returned to Kensington Metro Park to race at the 2024 Midwest Scholastic Rowing Championships. The Tigers were excited to return to the course this season after putting in some work since April and having found more speed and deeper lineups. 

Saturdays Time trials and Semi-finals were fruitful, with a solid tailwind and cool temperatures the Tigers qualified thru 12 of their 15 entries to finals, 10 to A finals & 2 to B finals (up from 10 finals, and 6 A finals in 2024) 

Sunday finals day brought ideal conditions with flatter water and warmer temperatures. The first boat to take to the course was the Men’s Novice 8+ in Lane 8. The Tigers came down the course in a tight early pack that ultimately spread apart at the 750 mark and crossed the line in 6th place (5 places higher than their 2023 finish in the same event) 

The Jr 2x event was on the course next, Miles Rees and Anthony Bertucci raced to 7th place, matching their 2023 result in the same event. The Tigers B entry just missed making the final, placing 9th the day before in time trials (Finn Iovino & Nolan Bunn) Juniors Carson Carona & Layton Wright raced up in the Varsity event, making the B final and placed 13th overall Sunday. 

The team’s first women’s event of the day Sunday was the Jr 4x (Emily DiDonato Natalie Helffrich Maddie Rodgers & Ava Moore) the lineup took 7th in the final, just missing 6th by 1.2 seconds. 

Immediately behind them on the course was the Tiger’s first medal of the day, the women’s varsity 4x captured 3rd (matching their 2023 finish) after a nerve-wracking semi the day before in which they caught a crab in the last 10 meters of the race. (Kathy Zema Alex Witzel Sawyer Wright & Lorelei Schreiber)

The Tigers entered a new event this year, racing a Women’s 4-. The crew took first in their semi on Saturday after a false start and battled a hard pull to port booth days but finished in 6th in the final. (Boe Sumerlin Madison Lambert Alexandra Edfors & Charlee Sunday)

The men’s team headed out to finals again in the Men’s Coxed 4x, stern 4 from the Novice 8+ with coxswain Abby Berger just missed medaling finishing 4th, the crew looks forward to racing up as a Jr 4+ next weekend at Stotesbury Cup regatta. 

The Women’s Varsity 4x split into two doubles to race as Jr & V 2xs. Kathy Zema & Alex Witzel matched their 2nd place finish in the time trial and brought home the team’s second medal of the day. Behind them Sawyer Wright & Lorelei Schreiber took 8th in the Varsity event. 

For the first time in many years, the Tigers had two Mens 4x in a final, the Mens Jr 4x A & B took to lanes 3 & 7 and brought home the team’s last medal, and second silver of the day with a hard-fought sprint, executing a new race plan and ultimately trading bow balls stroke by stroke at the end and a winning out with an incredible 0.2 second edge over Skyline B (Miles Rees Anthony Bertucci Carson Carona & Layton Wright) NAsB Entry crossed 7.9 seconds later in 6th place. (Cooper Lemon Alex Repinski Roman Bellisario & Christian Sperandeo).

The final event of the day for the Tigers was the Women’s Jr 4+, Comprised of the same lineup as the 4- and with Senior Coxswain Evie Disque at the helm, the Tigers took 5th place in the B final, placing 13th overall, next week this line up will race up in the Senior 4+ event at Stotesbury cup and looks forward to applying lessons learned from both events to find more speed to apply in Philly. 

Summing up the day, the team took an impressive 9th place in the combined points rankings, The Tigers had the best overall finish in over a decade. They were the highest-ranked Pittsburgh team in the combined Points rankings, secured 2nd in Women’s Sculling, 25th in Women’s sweep, 7th in Men’s Sculling & 19th in Men’s Sweep Points. 

Up next 8 select lineups will head east to Philadelphia for the Historic Stotesbury Cup Regatta to see new competition and line up against East Coast speed in the world’s largest scholastic regatta on 5/17 &18. 

Results & Line-Ups

Men’s Novice 8+ 6th 5:36.58

Cox Lauren Keyser Nik Kshirsagar Neil Pore Phoenix Core Max Disque Suraj Raina 

Grady Stoll  AJ Walton & Daniel Choi

Men’s Jr 2x 7th 5:53.82

Miles Rees & Tony Bertucci

Finn Iovino & Nolan Bunn – 9th in Time Trials

Men’s V 2x 13th overall (5th B final) 6:05.61

Carson Carona & Layton Wright

Women’s Jr 4x 7th 6:21.87

Emily DiDonato Natalie Helffrich Maddie Rodgers & Ava Moore

Women’s Varsity 4x 3rd 5:44.81

Kathy Zema Alex Witzel Sawyer Wright & Lorelei Schreiber

Womens Varsity 4- 6th 6:16.16

Boe Sumerlin Madison Lambert Alexandra Edfors & Charlee Sunday

Men’s Novice 4x+ 4th 5:59.95

Cox: Abby Berger, Nik Kshirsagar Neil Pore Phoenix Core Max Disque

Women’s Jr 2x 2nd 6:16.75

Kathy Zema & Alex Witzel

Jocelyn Munroe & Abby Greiner – 22nd in Time Trials 

Women’s V 2x 8th 6:22.22

Sawyer Wright & Lorelei Schreiber

Men’s Jr 4x 2nd & 6th 5:08.81/ 5:16.78

Miles Rees Anthony Bertucci Carson Carona & Layton Wright

Cooper Lemon Alex Repinski Roman Bellisario & Christian Sperandeo

Women’s Jr 4+ 13th Overall (5th B Final) 6:27.87

Cox Evie Disque Boe Sumerline Madison Lambert Alexandra Edfors & Charlee Sunday

Mens V 1x 22nd 6:06.33

Nolan Bunn