Crew Team Anticipates National Competition
Berkeley High School is the only public high school with a varsity Men’s crew team west of the Mississippi. But this in no way means that the BHS Crew team can’t compete. In fact, the Yellowjacket crew team is a national force, consistently participating in national championships and often coming home with hardware, most recently a bronze medal at Nationals this past year.
In a few weekends, the team will travel to Sacramento for a weekend to begin their journey to this year’s nationals. In Sacramento, the team will race at the Southwest Regionals, where the results of their races will determine whether they qualify for this year’s nationals.
The Youth National Championships are held in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. BHS has sent boats to the National Championships in the past few years, and captain Lucas Bell says of the Nationals, “All year long we have put in countless hours of work for this and I believe that we are fully capable of sending at least one if not a few boats to Tennessee this year to compete in the 2012 US Rowing Youth Nationals.”
The BHS Varsity Men’s Crew team is led by its two captains; Bell, a junior, as well as senior Ian Pengra.
The medal last year was BHS’s first at nationals since 2006, an indicator of a bright future for the BHS crew team. Bell is also enthusiastic about the future success of the program, with enormous faith in the younger rowers.
Lucas said about the younger rowers, “The sophomores and juniors continue improving as Varsity rowers and, as the novice team makes the change into more experienced second year rowers, I have no doubt that next year we will be putting out some very vast boats that will compete very nicely against some of the top teams in the region.”
With confident leaders and a deep program, the team figures to continue to be a force in the western region.
Bell feels that the promise of these younger rowers will play a large role in the continuation of BHS crew’s success, saying, “This year I have seen not only Varsity improve a great deal but also the incoming rowers (novices), who have shown throughout the year that they are dedicated and want to be a part of Berkeley High crew.”
Bell continued, “The fact that our varsity crew this year has shown great improvement from last year coinciding with the effort and the striving potential of this year’s novices gives me great optimism that our team will continue to win races not only this year, but next year as well. I believe that the future of Berkeley High is hopeful.”
BHS crew has some of the strongest history and prestige of any of the BHS sports programs, and continues to be successful at a very high level.
Winning a Nationals medal last year for the first time since 2006, the best is only to come for Berkeley High Men’s crew.