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Competing in a scrimmage, Gus Moore, left, and cox Ted Wilson are part of a Mounties team looking forward to a spring season.
Courtesy Margot Cochran

by Margot Cochran

FOR THE MONTCLAIR LOCAL

Rowing, like all sports at Montclair High School, has needed to make adjustments during the months of the pandemic.  With the spring season canceled in March, the coaches tried to keep the team connected through get-togethers, erging challenges and workouts, all on Zoom.

When school started in September, returning team members as well as interested freshmen were able to meet at the boathouse in Rutherford to train on the Passaic River.  Masks are required when on land, and keeping socially distant as much as possible is each athlete’s responsibility.  On the river, they are able to remove their masks while rowing.

“It was certainly disappointing to lose the spring season, but we are proud of our team and the work they continue to put in to staying in shape and working on their rowing techniques, along with their care to stay safe with masks and distancing while the coronavirus still threatens,” head coach Jeremy Michalitsianos said.

“The rowing community is small and the coaches feel we are all in this together,” head girls coach Lorna Rundle said.

Although the fall regattas were canceled, the Mountie athletes have been fortunate to participate in a series of scrimmages with other schools.

On Saturday, Oct. 17, two all-boys schools, Christian Brothers Academy from Middletown and St. Peter’s Prep of Jersey City, came to Overpeck County Park in Ridgefield to race the Montclair boys team.

One of Montclair’s alumni, Isabelle “Izzy” Corriere, a 2015 graduate, is coaching at Christian Brothers, and one of the first coaches for the MHS team, Felix DeCarvalho, is now head coach at St. Peter’s.

The team will participate in a few more challenges, one or two schools at a time, throughout November before starting winter training on Dec. 3.  

Even with the loss of the spring season, three Montclair crew members, Ethan Coplan, Ryan Phariss and Ted Wilson, have been recruited to Northeastern University for next fall.

While now is not their season, the team is hard at work in the hope that a spring season will take place in 2021. If students are interested in joining, they can go to friendsofmontclairrowing.org