The Rockford women’s crew team held strong in their first competition of the season and took top honors at the St. Mary’s Crew Classic on May 7 in Orchard Lake, Mich. For the second year in a row, the women’s team won the traveling Debbie Mitchell Trophy with a team total of 150 points. Ann Arbor Pioneer captured second place with 95 points and Ann Arbor Skyline took third with 83 points. A total of 10 teams from Michigan and Ohio competed in this event.
Leading the way for the women was the varsity four team of Kendra Bilardello, Rebecca Markham, Kate Fraser, Kara Korson and coxswain Shelby Hodges by winning gold in their division. The team was joined by Andrea Galloway, Jessica Wheeler, Emily Prus and Lynsey Felty in the varsity eight race and captured silver for the team.
Saturday was also a strong showing the novice women’s teams. The novice four were also awarded gold medals for McKenna Sampson, Zoe Zeerip, Aleah Dew, Allyson Andrews and coxswain Becca Featherston, with the novice eight boat winning silver for Caitlin Perini, Sampson, Zeerip, Brooke Berry, Lauren Pratt, Andrews, Dew and Tessa Powers under the direction of coxswain Kelsey Sweet.
Other silver medalists included:
• women’s lightweight eight: Stephani Sawicki, Chloe McColgan, Courtney Brummeler, Laini Scofield, S Ericksen, Jennifer Vlas, Corrine Prater, Powers, coxswain Hodges.
• women’s JV eight: Amy Fedeson, Dana DeBusschere, Lindsey Marvin, Shanre Watkins, Christine Pavano, Kaitlin Belmore, Jessica Levin, Jenna Brower, coxswain Brianna VandenBerg.
Bringing home bronze for the team were the women’s lightweight four team of McColgan, Scofield, Emily Prus, Sawicki and coxswain Hodges.
The team will compete next on Saturday, May 14 at the Grand Rapids High School Regatta that was rescheduled from earlier in the season at Riverside Park. Fans are encouraged to come cheer the Rams as they defend their championship title at this year’s event. Racing takes place at Boat Launch #2 and admission is free.