ROWING: PNRA/Mercer Rowers excel at Navy Day

The PNRA/Mercer boys won the men's high school 8 with coxswain event in 12:55. Pictured, from left: Andrew Hickey of Yardley, Jason Fleurial of Princeton, and John Tanguay of Hopewell.

WEST WINDSOR – Princeton National Rowing Association’s Mercer Rowing Club (PNRA/Mercer) kicked off its fall racing season by laying claim to victories in five events at the Navy Day Regatta Oct. 10 in Philadelphia. The regatta featured over 2,000 masters, collegiate, and high school athletes competing in head races on a 2.5 mile course on the Schuylkill River.

The Mercer Rowing Program boats won the Junior Women’s 8 with coxswain, Junior Mens 8 with coxswain, Junior Women’s 4 with coxswain, Junior Women’s JV 8 with coxswain and the Women’s Masters 8 with coxswain events.

Senior co-captain Kate Hickey (Notre Dame High School), of Yardley, was pleased with the PNRA/Mercer girls’ first place finishes in three events. “This is a great way to start our season. Winning all three events that we entered shows that we have a lot of depth on our team. I am looking forward to seeing how these three boats stack up against some of the best crews in the country next weekend at the Head of the Charles Regatta.”

The winning women’s high school 8 with coxswain crew included Hickey in the stroke seat, junior Celia Varga (Princeton Day School), senior co-captain Caitlin Cleary (Princeton HS), junior Katie Lustig (Council Rock North), of Newtown, sophomore Mia Barkenbush (West Windsor Plainsboro South), senior Rachel Mumau (Millstone Twp.), senior Elise Gorberg (WW-P North) and sophomore Sara Hansen (WW-P South) and senior coxswain Sydney Holgado (Robbinsville).

The winning women’s high school 4 with coxswain crew featured junior Lauren Miller (Steinert) in stroke seat, senior Jenna Kugel (Montgomery), junior Gwyneth Lavery (Lawrence), senior Eileen Hu and junior coxswain Caroline Galati (both from West Windsor-Plainsboro South).

The winning women’s high school junior varsity eight with coxswain crew included junior Sheila Kennedy-Moore in stroke seat, sophomore Bridget Parker, junior Isabel Roemer, freshman Sarah Closser (all four from Princeton), junior Ciara DeVenuto-Wyeth (Pennsbury), senior Kathryn Miller (Steinert), senior Glorianna Perrotte (Monroe), freshman Jackie Armetta (Villa Joseph Marie) and junior coxswain Lulu Herman (Pennsbury).

The girls are led by head coach Steve Baranoski in his first year with PNRA/Mercer.

In a field of 25 crews, the PNRA/Mercer boys won the men’s high school 8 with coxswain event with a time of 12 minutes, 55 seconds. Senior co-captain John Tanguay (Hopewell Valley) believes that crew is rowing together very well.

“The number one thing that we are doing well is getting into a good rhythm as soon as we cross the starting line. It feels like one oar going through the water which puts you into a good state of mind for a long race.”

Tanguay feels that the crew is ready to handle the longer, 3-mile race course at the Head of the Charles regatta next weekend.

The PNRA/Mercer high school 8 with coxswain crew featured junior Daniel Stoddard (WW-P South), junior Andrew Hickey (Notre Dame), of Yardley, senior Jason Fleurial (Princeton), Tanguay, junior Carter Levine (Princeton), junior Tyler Harris (WW-P North), senior co-captain Kevin Borup (South Brunswick), freshman Jack Gallagher (Council Rock North) of Newtown, and senior coxswain Nikhil Modi (WW-P South).

The boys are led by head coach Justin Ochal in his second year with PNRA/Mercer.

The Mercer Masters Women’s eight with coxswain also won their event to take home the coveted Navy Day Trophy. The Masters Women’s boat was composed of Caroline Gilati, Ellen Tormey, Cassandra Cohen, Judy Gorberg, Susan Voorhees, Rebecca Findlay, Kristin Appelget, Sharon Walters and Cheryl Baldino.

About the Princeton National Rowing Association

The Princeton National Rowing Association, a 501(c)3 organization, operates the Finn M.W. Caspersen Rowing Center located on the shores of Mercer Lake, Mercer County Park in West Windsor, New Jersey. The Princeton National Rowing Association is dedicated to operating a world-class training site for our nation’s elite athletes, providing opportunities for area youth to excel in the sport of rowing and to expand rowing in the area through community-based programs. PNRA runs the Mercer Junior Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for youth from over 30 area schools and the Mercer Masters Rowing Program which provides rowing opportunities for adults. The center is a home to the USRowing National and Olympic Teams, as well as rowing clubs and schools. PNRA received generous support from University Orthopaedic Associates, Resolute Racing Shells, Swift Racing, Hampton Inn and Residence Inn by Marriott.

For more information, contact Kristopher Grudt, 609-977-1094, or at or visit

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