Stewards Foundation Tridents Crew Turns in Stellar Performance

Stewards Foundation Tridents Crew Turns in Stellar Performance

TAMPA, FL - The Stewards Foundation just returned from its final fall regatta on Saturday at the 17th Annual Head of the South Regatta, a 5000 meter competition in Augusta, GA. The HOTS Regatta as it is known featured 493 entries from 52 teams, representing 12 states.  The Stewards Tridents Crew placed 6th overall of 52 teams just behind the College of Charleston and the University of Georgia and 3rd of 21 among high school/ Junior programs representing all corners of the Southeast Region, beating several college and university teams in the process of showing its best competitive team performance to date. Facing strong regional competition, almost every Stewards boat placed or showed including 3 fourth place finishes (4ths), 3 bronze medals (3rd), 2 silvers in the Women’s Youth Varsity Four (4+) oared shell and Women’s Youth Novice Single (1X), Emelia Watts.   To top that off, two championship crews, winning both the Women’s Youth Lightweight Four (4+) and the Women’s Youth Novice Eight (8+) to complete the 117.5 point team tally.

Showing its emerging strength as a Florida and Southeastern top 20 Junior/High School level team, the Tridents finished second (2nd) of 11 Florida programs and first (1st) of 7 teams from the Tampa area, including absolute domination over the University of Tampa (14th), Academy of Holy Names (18th/10th of High Schools), and Tampa Training Center (38th/16th of High Schools).

Head Coach, Dave Spraker commented on the Tridents developing competitiveness. “It’s great to see the results of an intense training plan paying off for these kids dedicated efforts.  Our girls program racked up several medals and on average rowed 3 races each, in some cases back to back races. That shows how tough these girls are and their determination to being top contenders.” Coach Spraker added, “The Novice and Varsity Eights are young which not only bodes well for the 2014 campaign, but the future as well. We will only be graduating one senior from the squad, so we intend to build significantly upon the speed we currently can bring to the race course.”  The novice eight crew of Katherine Porter, stroke, Jennifer Collins, Kaley Wojociechowski, Colleen Hoyt, Catherine Munn, sisters Lauren and Lexi Klein, Gabby Lemmerman, bow, and Alex Eason, coxswain, not only won the Championship in their event, but their raw time of 18:36.39 would have beat the entire collegiate field at the novice level by 12 sec and their 6th fastest time of the entire day in all women’s eights is unprecedented, just behind their own Varsity Eight, including a time faster than several varsity level collegiate boats.

On the Boys side, tremendous improvement over the last several weeks posted several close fourth place finishes and added up a slew of secondary points.  The Trident Crews posted 4th in the Varsity Four (4+), Varsity Eight  (8+), and the Varsity Quad sculls(4x) , and a third (3rd)place and fifth (5th)in the Novice Four (4+) and Novice Eight (8+) respectively, showing they too can be a serious contender both in Florida and the Southeast. 

Tom Feaster, Stewards High Performance Coach added, “ The emerging Florida rowing scene at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota is upping the ante for all crews in the area and the training plan Coach Spraker has gotten our athletes to buy into speaks volumes about our ability to challenge the best teams in Florida.” He continued, “From the consistency in multiple races and after three races in one day. I couldn’t be happier. Our Boys Team Captain, David Wiegman, sets the example of toughness and commitment to training. The fact he could start the day with that 3rd place finish in the Boys Junior Single (1X), and continue such performance race after race all day is outstanding.”  Wiegman, who trains in multiple boats as part of the High Performance Squad, is hoping to attend either the Coast Guard Academy or the US Naval Academy next year. He hopes his boats can perform well enough this Spring to earn an invitation to the Youth National Championships in California at Lake Natoma in Sacramento next June and plans to compete with the Tridents Florida All Stars at the Club Nationals in Camden, NJ next July.

The Stewards Foundation Tridents are entering the Winter Training phase of the 2013/2014 campaign.  They are offering an open Winter Training Camp available to any Tampa area rower,

to improve conditioning and sculling skills, starting November 18th.  In addition a series of Learn to Row Classes for both High School level and adults, and private lessons continues through to the upcoming Christmas Holiday. Please see www.rowtampa.com for more details on how to sign up.

In other exciting news, the Stewards will be hosting the Women’s US National team in February as part of the Opening Day 2014 at the Roosevelt Rowing Regatta, Feb 14th/15th/16th in the channel in downtown Tampa, between Davis Island and Harbour Island.  Please visit www.rooseveltrowingregatta.com for more information.

The Stewards Foundation is registered as a charitable Corporation in the State of Florida.

{IRS code 501(c) 3}. The Stewards mission is to use the sport of Rowing as a vehicle to teach teamwork and responsibility to young people.