Duxbury Senior Kate McNulty (pictured 2nd in from right) took her rowing skills nationwide this past weekend, with her four-person crew placing 5th out of 12 teams as part of the Northeast Region Rowing All-star team at the USRowing Youth Regional Championships. The USRowing Youth Regionals, held at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota Florida on September 23rd and 24th, were run in conjunction with the World Rowing Championships currently being held in Sarasota.
McNulty’s trip to Florida was the result of a rigorous selection process that involved over 900 of the top youth rowers from around the United States. “Many athletes applied, and then they chose the top 24 rowers and 2 coxswains from each of the six regions,” said McNulty. “The Northeast is especially competitive so they held a tryout in Saratoga, NY to help them determine who would be invited.”
After being selected to the Northeast Regional team, McNulty travelled to Florida last week to prepare for the racing. “We met junior rowers from all over the country but also from some of our rival teams here in New England,” said McNulty. “None of the girls in my boat had met or rowed together before the weekend but by the end we were all very good friends and had a lot of fun rowing together.”
In the competition, McNulty’s crew finished second in their preliminary heat, qualifying them for the six boat final. In the final, McNulty’s crew finished a competitive fifth place.
In addition to the racing, the youth athletes were given the chance to attend the opening ceremony for the World Rowing Championships. The “Worlds,” as it is known, is the top rowing event in the world outside of the Olympics, and is being held in the United States this year for the first time since 1994. “The ceremony was amazing,” said McNulty. “It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience the World Championships since it is rarely held in the United States!”
McNulty returned to Duxbury ready to share her experiences with her DBMS teammates. “This is very inspiring to the younger athletes on the team,” said DBMS Girls Varsity coach Betsy Davenport. “They can see firsthand what their potential is in the sport if they are dedicated and work hard. The whole team was very excited to see one of their teammates compete in the finals at such a high level competition.”
Davenport knows that McNulty’s experiences will help the team as a whole. “Kate is a quiet leader on the team, and makes every boat faster because she raises the standard for the team as a whole.”