By Angelica Niedermeyer, Staff Writer
The crew team has grown in both membership and practice time so far over the course of the season, currently boasting 18 rowers and two coaches, Nicolette Simeone and Gabrielle Conlin. As a club team, they have been working to prepare for regattas, and the coaches hope the rowers will attend races in the near future.
Simeone and Conlin, who trained together before their time at Trinity Hall, share a passion for the sport, which they use to inspire their team to continue improving and reaching for success.
“As an educator and rower, I wanted to share my love for crew with the students,” Conlin said. “We are laying the beginning framework to move from club to competitive team.”
At this point, the club is still fresh and has decided to work on endurance and strength before entering these competitions. The girls learn how to advance their stroke by working out on the ERGS (indoor rowing machines) at the OAR fitness center in Sea Bright and rowing outside on the boats at the Navesink River Rowing facility.
“As an overall group, the girls have improved their effort and attitude both on and off the water,” Simeone said.
The club team meets three times a week and has been moving towards becoming an official competitive team. Even though the team is advancing in skillset, there are some recurring problems that have slowed down the process, including inconsistent attendance, which has forced a split up of the team into two smaller groups with different abilities.
“It is a collective decision [to become a competitive team] between administration, athletic director and coaches.” said Conlin, who, despite the challenges with attendance and varied experience levels, has a positive outlook on the potential of the program. “For both the current and inexperienced rowers, every practice offers an opportunity for growth and will help the team succeed.”
The athletes and coaches believe next year promises to be an even better season, as the interest in crew grows among the returning and incoming students.