• Crew: Start of the Season

    by  • April 5, 2017 • Homepage, Sports • 0 Comments

    Over the weeks, a lot has been going on with Malden High School’s spring sports. Like most of the other teams, the school's crew team has been working endlessly to prepare themselves not only for a great season, but also to set the bar higher for their first meet. Setting the bar higher will inform their competitors that while they might not have a joint team, the extra hours and sweat put into every practice has made them better. This years captains are seniors Vivian Nguyen, Jonathan Dong, and Jacob-Bisset Taylor. Several teammates shared the captains significant role while at practice or during meets, whether it's take attendance for their coaches, running drills at practices, or helping returning and new members.

    Left to Right: James Mac, Brandon Li, Henry Nguyen, Paul Araiza, Jesse Bouley, Max Weng. Photo by Meghan Yip.

    The first week of tryouts, new and returning members got the opportunity to get a feeling of the environment in which the team holds practices whether the weather permits them. They were also able to get to know the coaches and new members got to know the returning members. As for the returning members, they have a couple of days to get back into the swing of things. A typical practice consists of cardio or erging in which can be done for two hours with a little break in between. Since the team consists of 45 members, there isn’t enough machines for each person. The team is divided into two separate groups and there are different sessions for practice based on each group. Both sessions are similar, just held at different times. It's a similar situation when it comes to determining who is in which canoe;  it depends on whether the individual is on varsity or novice which is the same as junior varsity. This is so no rower is put into a position where others around them possess different abilities whether it's faster or slower, and to keep things fair.

    Since tryouts, the coaches have been able to establish a team of 45. Sophomore Sebastian Romani stated that the new members have been doing great. “Hopefully get several wins this year” due to their carisma. No matter what’s it looking like outside, the team hopes to get outside and practice whether it's at the boathouse or taking a quick warm up jog around the school. Since there are a handful of new members, a new drill they are using is a term called tanking. Tanking is when four individuals row on water inside their canoe while the other half is on the dock holding onto the boat. This way, they are more comfortable when it comes to competing.

    Sophomore Santiago Portillo shared, “the triathlon was competitive and challenging [because as an individual] you have to do three things.” These three things are referred to approximately having to row and run five kilometers and five-thousand meters on the erg. This makes it challenging because each member has to push themselves more than they ever have. Depending on each person's time, you are placed with others similar to your score.

    No matter what the scores are, there is always space for opportunity. With their triathlon a success, the team now begins to prepare themselves for their first meet of the season on Saturday, April 8 2017 which includes teams like joint-team Somerville and Everett. Portillo looks to set the bar high on Saturday because “[he has] worked and gave it [his] all every day at practice.” When it comes to captains, Romani and Portillo said they are always leading the team, whether it's doing warmups before practice or simply leading the team, encouraging the team before an important meet. Romani also added that “[he’s] excited how [his] teammates do since it is the first meet of the season to get a feel of how everything is going” and see how they are able to integrate themselves as a cohesive team, whether if it’s cheering each other off or beating their times.

    Although they are getting ready to compete, the coaches haven’t set anything in stone for arrangements when it comes to placing everyone on canoes with their similar assets and skills. Throughout the season, Romani and Portillo are eager to see not only see what the season is in store for them,but also the team. Romani stated this includes “more wins...and more memories.” The team is constantly building on their relationships with each other and helping each other.


    Jesaias Benitez is a junior at the Malden High School. He is the Head of Photography for the Blue and Gold this year. While his parents are from El Salvador, Benitez was born in New York, which is where he spent most of his childhood. He then moved to Malden and attended the Beebe Middle School. After school, he usually works at Boda Borg. He enjoys watching The Walking Dead and likes to eat Japanese food. Tennis is one sport that he enjoys playing. One of his favorite classes in school is AP World History. Benitez’s main interest is photography, he would like to pursue a career related to it such as forensics. This year, Benitez is very excited to work on photography for The Blue and Gold articles. He is also looking forward to working with the new members.

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