AMHERST, Mass. (Oct. 20, 2012) – A foggy morning transitioned into a bright day in more ways that one for the Mount Holyoke College equestrian team, as the Lyons came away with their fourth straight victory of the season at the UMass Horse Show. The show, which had its challenges and tough draws, saw the Lyons pull together to create and even larger lead in the Regional standings.
The show began with Open Fences where senior Allison O'Neill won her section, sophomore Hannah Thornton was fifth and juniors Felicia Harrsch and Alexa Lohrer were both sixth. In Intermediate Fences junior Ella Pittman brought home second, while sophomore Maura Zaldonis and junior Flynn Vickowski were both fifth and sophomore Erinn Lew received reserve.
In Novice Fences, Mount Holyoke put in a strong showing! Sophomore Abby Raucher and first year Genevieve Couldwell both brought home blue ribbons in their sections and first year Claire Herlin came in third. Additionally, senior Morgan Cooley and sophomore Anne Waldo were both fourth while sophomore Madeline Shortt came in sixth and sophomore Jessica Murray was reserve.
The novice riders continued to put in great rides on the flat with junior Emily Denisco and Waldo coming in first place while seniors Isabelle McGovern and Clara Tate were second. Senior Jessica Law was third while junior Ellen Lowden was fourth, and Couldwell was fifth. McGovern's second place qualified her for regionals in Novice Flat.
In Open Flat, junior Eleanor Maynard and Lohrer received seconds, Herlin and Thornton were third and senior Sally Gibb came in fourth, Harrsch was fifth, and O'Neill received reserve. In Walk Trot Canter, first years Heather Armstrong and Jackie Azelby received blue ribbons for their rides while sophomore Laura Von der Porten was third, senior So Jin Lee was sixth and junior Sarah Clinchy was reserve.
The Lyons swept Intermediate Flat with Cooley and Pittman winning their sections and the strong showing continued with Zaldonis taking second and Vickowski receiving third. Junior Lexi Marek and sophomore Callie Calder both received second place in Walk Trot while sophomore Katie Knutson was reserve.
Lohrer, Harrsch, Maynard, Thornton, Pittman and Herlin competed in the premiere of the Bay State Classic, a new Cacchione medal style class that supports UMass' Bay State Morgan breeding program. After completing a test over fences and a flat class, Pittman came in fourth place and Harrsch was seventh.
Pittman (pictured on lead photo) finished reserve over all high point rider and high point intermediate rider. She also qualified for regionals with her second place in Intermediate Fences.
At the end of the day Mount Holyoke increased its lead in the region to 33 points over UMass.
Final Team Standings: 1st - Mount Holyoke College (34 points), 2nd - Westfield State University (30 points), 3rd - Smith College (28 points), 4th - Williams College (25 points), 5th - UMass Amherst (19 points), 6th - Amherst College (18 points), 7th - Hampshire College (16 points), 8th - Springfield College (13 points).
Photos courtesy of MHC Equestrian.