Hingham Crew Posts Impressive Showing Against Top New England Schools

Hingham’s girls second varsity boat wins the Petit Finals at the New England Interscholastic Rowing Association Championship Regatta. (all photos courtesy of Holly Moriarty)

June 3, 2024 by J.P. Powers

This past weekend, Hingham Crew traveled to Worcester Mass on Saturday for some incredible races against the top rowing teams in New England at NEIRAs (New England Interscholastic Rowing Association Regatta). The day featured perfectly beautiful spring weather with plenty of sun, and a lot of great racing from the Hingham rowers.

On Saturday, the teams arrived early to Lake Quinsigamond in Worcester, ready to take on the very best teams in the region. The regatta was structured so that the top two boats in each 1,500 meter heat qualified to advance to the grand finals and the third and fourth boats went on to the petite finals of their division. Facing slight headwinds, the Hingham boys third varsity boat with Tyler Bastia at coxswain, Brendan Engel Stroke, Niko Mangili, Lachlan Knies, Oliver McLucas, Owen Cerrato, Zak Robbins, Will Whitrap, and bow Liam Connelly led off the morning against an absolutely loaded field featuring some of the top private and Catholic schools, as well as archrival Duxbury. During the race, Duxbury grabbed an early lead against the field with Deerfield and eventually BC High chasing them down. Hingham rowed a terrific race, but couldn’t quite manage to chase down the leaders, finishing just outside of qualifying for the next round.

The boys 3V boat started the day for Hingham racing on Lake Quinsagamond in Worcester.

Next up, the Hingham girls third varsity got off to a good start against a similarly strong field and battled hard, chasing Kent and Bedford as they jockeyed for third place. Coxswain Shayla St. Croix, stroke Madeline Kittinger, Dania Thayer, Tayler Sargent, Bianca Kiley, Elsie Olin, Aubrey Fairfield, Emme Beaudoin, and Abrielle Beaudoin got off to a strong start. At around the midway point, the Hingham boat drifted a bit too far to starboard and was nearly flagged, but fought back and raced Bedford bow to bow all the way down the course, both boats leaving Glastonbury several boat lengths behind. In the end, powerhouses Andover, Exeter, and Kent were able to gain some separation from the pack, and Hingham was nudged out by less than two seconds by Bedford after an incredible struggle – barely missing qualification for the finals. In all, it was a satisfying race for a boat that has powered through a very impressive season and showcased tremendous potential.

Hingham’s girls 3V crew (center) just missed third place to qualify for the NEIRA finals.

In the next race, the boys second varsity faced yet another loaded field with top private schools Deerfield, Andover, and Exeter, as well as Farmington, as well as archrival Duxbury. Undaunted, Coxswain Lucas Mangili, stroke Owen Franklin, Trevor Steiner, Will Cassidy, Arlo Maxwell, Hanley Stroka, Alex Doggett, Jack Burns, and bow Cullen Moriarty got off the line well despite very quick starts from powerhouses Deerfield, Exeter, and Andover. The Hingham boys, leaving Farmington well behind, battled with Duxbury all along the course, outmuscling them over the course of the final 500 meters to finish a complete boat length ahead, having submitted a tremendous effort and qualifying for a spot in the petite finals in the process.

HHS’s boys 2V crew pulls ahead of the competition to qualify for the Petit Finals at NEIRAs.

Senior Captain Cullen Moriarty ‘24 discussed the strategy the boys used to ensure a place in the finals, “We went into this race prepared for a dogfight and that’s exactly what it was. Starting in fifth, we clawed inch by inch through strategic power tens to make it to fourth and qualify for the petite finals. I had never seen such a concentrated drive to succeed in this boat as I did today and I’m so proud and impressed by everyone’s determination.”

Among tight competition, HHS’s girls 2V crew (far right) secures a spot in the Petit Finals.

Next up was the Hingham girls second varsity, who have seemingly found another gear over the past few weeks. With coxswain Jane Betti, stroke Sophia Santarelli, Genevieve Vale, Louisa Orth, Izzy Wagner, Eliza Powers, Nina Murphy, Lydia D’Arcy, and bow seat Maddie Owens, the girls lined up against yet another very strong field. Hingham got off to a very strong start and battled bow to bow with Andover, St. Paul’s, and Bedford, quickly leaving Farmington and East Lyme behind. In the middle 500, Hingham made an aggressive move and increased their tempo, opening up a small lead on Bedford, but not quite able to walk down St. Paul’s and Andover. In the last 500 meters, St. Paul’s and Hingham battled back and forth for the lead as it was anybody’s race. Finally, Hingham lost a tiny bit of momentum in the last 300 meters, finishing in fourth place and securing a spot in the petite final after an incredible four-way battle.

In another close race, Hingham’s boys 1V also earns a spot in the Petit Finals.

Next, the boys first varsity with coxswain Jack Levy, stroke Dylan Drew, James Feeley, Sam Ackerman, Walker Bogen, Will Barry, James Barry, Slater Fairfield, and Josh Bradshaw found themselves in yet another loaded field with private powerhouses number 1 seed Andover, Exeter, St. Paul’s, Hotchkiss, as well as archrival Duxbury. Determined to make their mark, the Hingham boys flew off the line, churning through the water as they battled for a coveted spot in the finals. Andover, Exeter, and St. Paul’s quickly established position near the front as Hingham dug in against determined Hotchkiss and found a small lead against Duxbury. In the last 500, with their backs against the wall and facing elimination, Hingham increased their pace and powered ahead of Hotchkiss, seizing the last spot for qualification by a single seat after a furious battle.

Girls 1V paddling out to the race start before qualifying for Petit Finals.

In the last of the morning’s qualifying races, the Hingham girls first varsity boat with coxswain Grace Ji, stroke Maeve Schnorr, Maisie Knies, Sophie Kerr, Thea Migliaccio, Ava Sugrue, Natalie Shaw, Marissa Matthews, and bow Lynnayah Ryan faced off against St. Paul’s, Boston Latin, Duxbury, Tabor, and Simsbury. The Hingham girls got off to a very strong start and battled Tabor and Simsbury for a qualifying bid. St. Paul’s, Boston Latin, and Duxbury pulled away a bit for the lead about halfway through the race, but Hingham, determined to grab the final spot in the petite final, fought extremely hard and emerged victorious in the incredible 3-boat race finish after battling neck and neck down the course.

Hingham’s boys 2V crew competing in the Petit Finals at NEIRAs.

In the afternoon races, the Hingham boys 2V boat led off in the petite finals against a very fast field with Stonington, Salisbury, Phillips Andover, Brunswick, and Kent. The Hingham boys pushed hard against the strong field and acquitted themselves quite well, proving themselves to be one of the dozen best second varsity crews and a top three public school in New England.

Girls 2V crosses the finish line first to win the Petit Finals for Hingham!

The girls second varsity boat, which has been on a remarkable second-half tear as the season winds down, hit their peak in the very fast petite final. Facing off against private school powerhouses Glastonbury and Kent, as well as fellow publics Bedford, Hanover, and archrival Duxbury, the Hingham girls charged off the line with a strong start, pushing into a quick lead alongside Kent. The boats struggled to gain separation for the first 500 meters, until finally Hingham, Bedford, and Kent broke away from the field with Hingham in a very tight lead. As Bedford and Hingham battled back and forth for the lead, Kent lay about half a boat length back, waiting to make their move. During the middle 500, the Hingham girls increased their pace, pushing past their competitors as the boats raced furiously towards the finish. With 500 meters to go, the Hingham girls had a short, but definitive length of open water between themselves and second place Bedford, who also managed significant open water between themselves and the rest of the field. The Hingham girls found yet another gear in the last distance as they dug their oars in and crossed the line a boat length ahead of Bedford, with several lengths of open water ahead of the rest of the field, to secure an exhilarating petite final win.

Hingham’s boys 1V (right) takes fourth place in the Petit Finals.

In the boys first varsity petite final, Hingham faced off against an extremely deep and talented field, with St. Paul’s, St. John’s Prep, B.C. High, Stonington, and Bedford. The powerful and experienced Hingham crew showed exactly why they were a strong qualifier as they got off to a quick start and charged into the fray. In the first 500, Hingham grabbed a seat lead against Stonington and Bedford, about a half a boat length behind the three lead boats. Hingham was able to maintain contact with the lead boats, rowing cleanly and powerfully through the middle 500, as they tried to make a move on the leaders. In the last 500, Hingham continued to push their lead against Stonington and Bedford, just barely trailing the three lead boats. As Hingham pushed their stroke rate nearing the line, they finished just behind the leaders with a boat length on Stronington and open water in front of Bedford for an impressive fourth-place finish.

HHS’s girls 1V crew competes in the NEIRA Petit Finals.

In the final Sunday race for Hingham, the girls first varsity faced yet another loaded lineup, with Brookline, Duxbury, Glastonbury, Hanover, and Bedford. As the headwinds increased slightly, the Hingham girls fired off the line and pulled out to a small early lead on the field. For the first half of the race, the boats jockeyed for position as Hingham fell back a bit, but remained within striking distance of the lead. The tightly clustered field exchanged the lead several times as the Hingham girls battled hard. In the end, Hingham was not quite able to muster enough push to catch the lead boats, but put together a tremendous race as they put together a composed, gritty effort and proved themselves to be a top boat in the region.

Having faced some of the very best private and public schools in the region, the boys and girls of Hingham Crew put in some powerful performances and proved their young team to be a formidable threat down the road.

Both the boys and girls teams owe a tremendous debt for the kindness, leadership, and work ethic set by the graduating seniors. Hingham Crew is growing in strength each season because of the values that have been instilled in the team by the examples these young people have set for themselves and others in and out of the classroom. While their talents and presence will be sorely missed next year, the mark they’ve left on the program will be indelible.

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