ROWERS END SOUTH REIGN
By TONY WHITE
MACLEAN High School rowers take a bow!
The 37-strong team performed sensationally at the NSW Combined High Schools (CHS) Rowing Championships on the Manning River in Taree over the weekend to annexe South Grafton High's six-year stranglehold as champion school at the prestigious regatta.
SGH finished runner-up with Sydney Boys High third.
Overall the Maclean team, made up of 32 girls and boys from Years 7-10 and five from Years 11 and 12, won 23 gold, 15 silver and 12 bronze medals in single and mixed scull events.
Of the 37 rowers that competed for Maclean, 32 won medals.
And Angela Eke and Nicole Depiante, who each won three gold medals, were joint winners of the Gabrielle Pritchard Award for most outstanding female rower of the regatta.
Furthering the reputation of the Clarence Valley as an outstanding breeding ground for rowing excellence, Grafton High School's Lewis Hemphill, 14, who has only just recovered from a bout of glandular fever and been rowing for just 18 months, won the Reg Galvin Award for outstanding male rower at the regatta for the second successive year.
"The school principal Glenn Brown was ecstatic at the results," Maclean's rowing co-ordinator Robyn Baker said.
"This is the first time Maclean have won the overall title since 1996. The results show the depth of the rowing squad which will be a force to be reckoned with in the future, as the majority of the rowers are still juniors.
"The great success at the regatta is also due to the sheer hard work, talent and commitment of coaches, Graeme Essex, Harold Kratz, Neil McLennan, Betty Bogdanek and assistant coaches Sandra Williams, Douglas Mckenzie and Bob Patterson."
Maclean's gold medal winners were: Rachael See 2, Katrina Fisher, Karen Hafner, Liam Ryan, Renae Wilson, Angela Eke 3, Nicole Depiante 3, Stephanie Honeybrook 2, Kate Hogan, Mike McCann, Nathan Hawkes, Kane Douglas, Mat Bowie, Rohan Hislop, Natasha Lovell, Phoebe Zietsch, Sally Jenkins and Elyse Depiante.