High School Rowing Opens up College Opportunities for Snohomish County Students

Around 80 Middle School and High School Rowers are heading to the mouth of the Snohomish River to train with the Everett Rowing Association (ERA).

“Rowing is unique in that our boys and girls teams share practice times, facilities and equipment” said Padraic McGovern, ERA director and varsity women’s coach.  “Also, rowing has a unique approach to teaching the sport. As most participants don't have any experience in the sport, the "Novice" or beginners, train and race together. An athlete is a 'novice' for one year, in which they compete against other novice. It is a good introduction to the sport.  By the time the novice year ends, the athletes are up to speed and race against other experienced athletes.”

There are 84 schools in Division I Women's Rowing, and most of them offer some level of athletic scholarship. Athletes typically take 3-5 official visits and select the school that matches their athletic and academic goals. Their interests are as varied as the schools they attend. Last year Everett Rowing Associate graduated 28 Seniors with 16 going on to row in college.

"Everett athletes tend to be well prepared for collegiate rowing," McGovern. "The Northwest Region is very competitive, so we have a high standard to meet in our local racing. Our team is deep, which requires athletes to perform at a high level every day at practice."

ERA glass of 2014 includes male rowers Jesse Maritz:  Oregon State University, Eric Engel: Gonzaga University and Jack Byrne: Seattle University.  ERA female rowers going on to row in college include Lizzie Bader and Jane Bird at the University of San Diego; Haley Finley, Samantha Schwisow, Melanie Martinell, Lindsey Atterbury and Celina Perez at the University of Portland; Megan Sanders and Amica Smith at Washington State University; Danica Buse at Nova Southeastern University; Fiona Bellows at Seattle Pacific University, Christine Kerby at Western Washington University and Basak Soylu at Boston College.

Founded in 1982, the association was fortunate to receive support from Dick and Irma Erickson who brought their considerable experience in the sport of rowing to bear in the following years of growth. Dick Erickson (1936 – 2001), rowing coach of the University of Washington from 1968-87, brought needed equipment, valuable knowledge and unequalled inspiration to the association. Since 1984 Everett Rowing Association has worked with the Everett Parks Department to offer programs for adults and youths in Snohomish County.

Today ERA continues to enjoy an excellent reputation in the Rowing Community and continues to build relationships with Universities throughout the U.S.  In 2014 ERA sent two boats to the National Championships in Sacramento, Calif. The Boys Lightweight 4 placed 12th and the Girls Vasity 8 placed 14th.

"As a team, we are looking to build on our performance last year” said Padraic. “In order to continue to grow the program we will need to recruit more rowers from all grades seventh to 12th grade.”

To help with the introduction to rowing there will be an Open House for youths and adults at the Everett Boathouse, 300 Smith Island Road in Everett on September 6, 2014 at 9 a.m. No RSVP needed.

For questions, call 425-345-5138 or email:

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

Read the Oct 21
Green Edition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Browse the archives.

Friends to Follow

View All Updates