Fifth Formers Caroline Friedman and Julia Davis are the captains of the varsity girls’ crew team. Their leadership has brought the team together and created a tight-knit community.
Madeleine Tsung: When and how did you start rowing?
Caroline Friedman: I first became interested in rowing when my father joined the Carnegie Lake Rowing Association in Princeton. I would go with my mom and brothers and watch his races, yelling from the stone bridge overlooking Lake Carnegie, “Go dad, go!” I loved the way the boat glided with every single stroke seeming to be in perfect sync. I was really inspired to start rowing, and I started my novice season with PNRA Mercer (a local club team) in the spring of my eighth grade year at John Witherspoon Middle School.
Julia Davis: Freshman year, because I didn't have a spring sport.
MT: What do you love most about crew and what has caused you to continue?
CF: I have really come to appreciate the way in which rowing fosters a certain humility which makes for a great team attitude. It is the ultimate team sport; there are no superstars. Over my four years at Lawrenceville, I have watched the team make amazing progress on and off the boat. The girls truly love, support, and respect one another. I think that everyone is motivated to work hard for one other, which is something that is very special about our team.
JD: The exercise and being outside.
MT: What do you enjoy most about crew here at Lawrenceville?
CF: I love finishing a day of classes, sprinting back to Kirby to change into my crew outfit, and then getting on the bus with all of the girls. Everyday I look forward to getting on the water again and being able to practice on Mercer Lake. I really enjoy being at the boathouse (especially when the weather is warm) and sweating and pushing myself on the water when we do pieces.
JD: The team.
MT: What has your experience as team co-captains been like so far? What’s been the most challenging?
CF: So far, it has been great. We are continuing to figure out what our strategies should be as a team this season, and our coaches are still mixing up lineups in order to see which combinations of rowers work well together. Because the girls are respectful and positive, being captain is a fun experience. I am really proud of the team and am really looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish this year.
JD: I am honored to be captain. The girls make it pretty easy, but I guess the hardest part is just trying to be the best leader I can be or making decisions when what people want and what is best for the team do not align.
MT: What other sports do you participate in and how do you balance crew with it?
CF: I used to do cross country, but this year I did fall crew instead. In the winter, I did senior conditioning so I either erged or biked each day to get ready for the spring season. I basically do crew all year around now.
JD: I've ran cross country throughout my years at lawrenceville. I sometimes run after practice just because I love running so much.
MT: What are your goals for the future and do you plan to continue crew in college?
CF: I am planning to row at Colgate next year. I'm really excited!
JD: I do not think I will continue to row crew in college, but I am not totally sure yet. I am going to the University of Georgia next year, and I might join a club team to stay active.
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