The summer of 2013 has given witness yet again to the dedication and pursuit of excellence that has consistently been instilled in Delaware Men’s Crew oarsmen each year. Coming off a productive and enlightening season, both on the men’s heavyweight and lightweight squads, members of the UDMC team were poised to continue their success into the summer months. Many of our athletes of whom are either new, returning, or alumni continue to make their fellow Blue Hens proud as they demonstrate that their hard work and commitment, which is the foundation of The Men’s Crew Team, allows Delaware to be able to enjoy such a bright and prosperous future.
Each year as one class departs from Delaware another one enters ready to make their freshman season a success. The Youth Nationals Regatta in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, a regatta in which many high school athletes race at the end of their season is the culmination of many programs’ seasons and is a good indication of where a crew stands against each other due to the fact that both clubs and high schools compete. In the Men’s Lightweight 8+ Drew Sanesac won the C final but managed to post the 7th fastest time overall while Andrew Seski from Detroit Boat Club had an impressive finish to win the bronze medal. Bill Mayer will be joining fellow St. Augustine alum Joseph Mohnack on the men’s team after finishing 18th overall in this highly competitive Lightweight 8+ event. Representing New Canaan Crew is Mike Snef who won a silver medal in a very tough varsity quad event. Congratulations to all incoming freshman rowers on their previous season and the men’s crew team looks forwards to meeting you all this fall.
Returning members of the varsity squad have enjoyed getting into smaller boats this summer and racing both in the national and international level. Philadelphia has proven to be a hot spot as a number of UD rowers have chosen to row out of some of the many prestigious clubs it has to offer. Undine Barge Club has hosted 4 Delaware rowers this summer: RJ Schilgen ‘15, Dan McCole ‘15, Sean McBride ‘16 and Corey Brown ‘16. Schilgen has provided some insight into why he was drawn towards Undine: “I chose Undine because it seemed like the best fit for me amongst all the clubs on Boathouse Row. It has a smaller racing team so you get a lot more time with the coaches. The members at undine form a close knit community and that’s also something I wanted to be a part of.” Schilgen and his doubles partner Rob Wallace managed two impressive 2nd place finishes at both Independence Day Regatta and US Rowing Club Nationals. Coming off a nearly undefeated season Brown entered this summer with a focused mind: “My goal was just to work as hard as I could and try to become the best rower I could be. I wanted to really focus on the sweeping technique and lean further about the stroke.” Brown has continued the success he enjoyed this spring by achieving 1st and 2nd place finishes at Independence Day Regatta as well as a bronze medal at Club Nationals. In Traver’s Island New York, rising sophomores Jake Marshall, Chris Selvaggio and Mitch Williiams were able to row together in New York Athletic Club’s Lightweight 8+. At Cub Nationals NYAC was able to bring a gold medal home from the Lightweight 8+ event.
It is not only rowers who have managed to enjoy Philadelphia rowing scene but also two coxswains. Varsity Lightweight coxswain Becky Lubker ‘16 and Freshman Lightweight coxswain Chandler Clemens ‘16 have spent time on the Schuylkill River as well. Lubker chose to cox at Vesper Boat Club while Clemens went to Penn A.C. Both have made strides this summer with Lubker gaining several victories at the Schuylkill Navy and Independence Day regattas along with an impressive second place finish at Royal Canadian Henley. Lubker took home two golds and one silver at Club Nationals adding to Vesper Boat Club’s points to win them the Points Trophy. Clemens has also enjoyed success this summer with victories at the Independence Day Regatta, silver at Club Nations and 5th, 4th and 2nd place finishes at Canadian Henley.
Alumni continue to make family and friends of Delaware Men’s Crew proud by continuing their pursuits on the river after they have graduated. The Club Nationals pulled in a strong representation from the alumni including rowers from the classes of ’08, ’09, ’11 and ’13. Pete Seymour class of ’08 spent his summer at the University Barge Club. His efforts and training earned him 2nd place in the Senior 1x and 4th place Senior 2x. From the class of ’09 Dave Walton trained at New York Athletic Club and Mike Sciblo progressed in his rowing at Undine Barge Club. Walton left Club Nationals with gold in the Senior 4x, silver in the Senior Lightweight 2- and Bronze in the Lightweight 4+ and 8+. Sciblo placed 5th in the Senior Lightweight 1x and 3rd in the Senior Lightweight 4x. Vesper Boat Club housed Sean Rader from the class of ’11 and Will Purman from the class of ’13. Rader moved to the final in the Lightweight 1x where he was faced with equipment failure resulting in a DNS. Purman took 2nd in the Lightweight 1x, 2nd in the Lightweight 2x and 2nd in the Senior Lightweight 4x.
One particular alumnus has set himself apart competing on an international level that most people never manage to achieve. Colin Ethridge ‘11 has had an unbelievably remarkable summer season however it is also a summer season that has yet to be concluded. Currently Ethridge is a member of the Malta lightweight quad, which is competing in the World Championships in South Korea. Ethridge’s journey however began back in May when he and his doubles partner Peter Alter placed first in the Men’s Lightweight Double event at the National Selection Regatta #2.This victory secured their right to row in either the first or second Rowing World Cup; with Ethridge and Alter choosing the second World Cup in Eton. Although Ethridge’s and Alter’s 9th place finish might not have been what they had hoped for Ethridge took this opportunity as a learning experience. “We made a ton of improvements through the regatta and came away knowing what international speed was like in the Olympic class”. Upon returning to the United States, Ethridge chose to row for Malta Boat Club where he placed 1st in the Men’s Lightweight Quad at the Senior World Championship Trials. This is where Ethridge’s story stands at the moment as he and the rest of the Malta lightweight quad wait for races to begin on August 25th. The U.S Lightweight Quad however seems ready to race against some of the world’s fastest crew based on Ethridge’s description of their preparation, “Regarding training this summer, we’ve really focused on the basics: touching at full reach, squeezing all the way through, staying relaxing etc. The physical training has been kept simple as well: hard days are hard, easy days are easy.” He went on to say, “The idea we’ve tried to instill is that we want to create a condition in which a crew must row both hard and technically more productive than us to win, doing one or the other will not suffice”. All the friends, family and supporters of Delaware Men’s Crew wish Colin the best of luck and know he will make us proud and represent his country well.
The University of Delaware Men’s Crew team looks forward to welcoming rowers, coxswains, alumni and friends back to the fall season!