Brock showed once again that they remain one of the top rowing programs in the OUA on Saturday, as the Badgers men’s team came second overall in points, while the women’s team finished third. The Western Mustangs went home with both the men’s and women’s banners this year; the men defeated Brock by just 33 points, while the women’s team beat second place Queen’s University by 300 points.
Brock started the day on a high note, as Dave de Groot and Matt Finley captured gold in the Men’s 2- in a time of 6:43.17, beating Western by 4 seconds. The Men’s Heavyweight 4+, with coxie Jamie Germond, Luke Gadsdon, Zachary Koroll, Zak Lewis, and Scott Murphy won beat second place Western by 7 seconds to claim gold. After finishing second at Head of the Trent, the crew finished their season in style by winning both the Brock Invitational and OUA Championship. The Brock heavyweights also picked up gold in one of the most prestigious events of the regatta, the heavyweight Men’s 8+. The crew, with Germond, Gadsdon, Finley, de Groot, Koroll, Lewis, Murphy, Nick Heffernan, and Spencer Brennan led the entire race, eventually winning by 4 seconds.
On the women’s side, Brock also had a very successful regatta. Katherine Walker and Stephanie Mowder finished off their dominant season by winning gold in the Women’s 2x, 8 seconds ahead of Queen’s. After placing second at Head of the Trent, they won gold at both the Brock Invitational and OUA Championship. In the final women’s event of the day, the Lightweight 2-, Walker teamed up with Jen Beaudette to win gold by 8 seconds over Western University.
The men’s team picked up six more medals on Saturday, as the Lightweight 8+, Lightweight 4+, Lightweight 2x, and Lightweight 1x won silver, and the Heavyweight Men’s 1x and Lightweight Men’s 2- came third. In the Lightweight 8+ coxie Amy MacLean, James Myers, Brandan Andrews, James Potts, Brandon D’Orazio, Jacob Thomas, Perseus Taylor, John Hagemans, and Eric Buchanan finished 9 seconds behind Western. The Lightweight 4+ of Andrews, Grayson Gray, Taylor Ashwood, and Zach Whiteley finished 6 seconds back of Western. Shortly before the 4+, Gray and Ashwood raced the Lightweight 2x, finishing 3 seconds behind Trent. James Myers had a close race in the Lightweight 1x, losing to Trent by just .7 of a second. Will Bryden placed third in the Heavyweight 1x, 9 seconds behind Western. D’Orazio and Potts placed third overall in the Lightweight 2-.
Other crews winning medals for the women’s team were the Heavyweight 1x, and Lightweight Women’s 2x. Stephanie Mowder had a close race in the 1x, losing to Laurentian by 6 seconds. It was a tight race to the line, with Western winning silver by just .2 of a second. Vicky Lea Thompson and Jen Beaudette captured bronze in the Lightweight 2x, losing to Western and University of Ottawa.
Four Brock athletes were nominated for OUA Rower of the year; Luke Gadsdon, Matt Finley, and Dave de Groot for the men’s award, and Katherine Walker on the women’s side. Dave de Groot and Emily Jago of Laurentian were the recipients of the award. Jacquie Beattie and Peter Somerwil were both nominated for Women’s and Men’s Coach of the Year.
Brock crews are now preparing for the Canadian University Rowing Championships, which take place next weekend in Lochaber, Nova Scotia. The event, hosted by St. Francis Xavier University, will be the first time a national championship regatta has taken place east of Montreal. The team leaves Brock on Wednesday, with racing taking place on Saturday and Sunday.
The Lightweight Women’s 2x after winning bronze.
Katherine Walker and Stephaine Mowder after winning gold in the Heavyweight Women’s 2x. Photo credit to Jade Farhat.