Westport's Saugatuck Rowing Club juniors scored impressive results at the San Diego Crew Classic regatta, Mar. 29-30 in San Diego, California, with the girls varsity eight bringing home the gold and JV squads placing second and fourth.

Despite the lingering Connecticut winter that limited the Saugatuck crews to five days of practice on the water before the regatta, the Saugatuck squads shone against other high school crews from across the country. In addition to the varsity girls eight win, Saugatuck's girls JV 8+ placed second in its category, with the boys JV 8+ finishing fourth. The victorious varsity girls 8+ also won the prestigious Head of the Charles Regatta in the fall.

"Our junior rowers performed well in this early-season regatta against tough competition. We're looking forward to more strong races throughout the spring," said Sharon Kriz, director of junior rowing at Saugatuck Rowing Club. Kriz is head coach for junior boys; the junior girls are coached by Chase Graham.

Competing in the first-place girls varsity 8+ were Lelia Boley, Westport; Lexi Bralver, coxswain, Westport; Genevieve Esse, New Canaan; Margaret Manley, Wilton; Alison Morrison, Westport; Katherine Ratcliffe, Westport; Amra Sabovic, Wilton; Willemijn ten Cate, Westport; and Nica Wardell, Westport.

The girls JV 8+, placing second in that category, included Katie Grotto, Westport; Ellie Harned, Darien; Morgan Macey, Wilton; Bridget Murphy, Weston; Kelsey McGinley, Westport; Caroline O'Brien, Darien; Elisabeth O'Brien, Darien; Lily Pillari, coxswain, Greenwich; and Claire Plunkett, Darien.

The boys JV 8+, placing fourth in that category, consisted of Matt Addessi, Westport; Nick Amato, Westport; Nick Balderston, Wilton; Zach Byer, Weston; Lucas Hazan, Weston; Gage Holzhauer, Ridgefield; Harrison Malec, Westport; Graham Offermann (coxswain), Bedford; and Silviu Tudor, Fairfield.

Competing in the boys varsity 8+ were Oliver Bub, Westport; Wit Geffs, Riverside; Jake Hulina, coxswain, Westport; Lucas Manning, Westport; Patrick Overton, Westport; Kyle Ratner, Westport; Grant Steffen, Westport; Ben Waller, Westport; and Ben Wisdom, Ridgefield.

Founded in 1991, Saugatuck Rowing Club has earned a well-deserved reputation for excellence in rowing. The club offers top-of-the-line fitness equipment, including a fleet of racing shells and a cadre of professional coaches who guide and encourage individuals of all ages to pursue their rowing goals. For more information, visit www.saugatuckrowing.com.