The Mount Holyoke riding team, under the direction of 30th-year head coach CJ Law, continued to showcase why it is among the best in the nation during the 2013-14 campaign. The Lyons, who won seven shows during the regular season, once again finished at the top of the Regional standings and secured a spot at the IHSA National Championships.
MHC opened its regular season with five straight wins in the fall. The Lyons garnered High Point honors at the Smith, UMass and Amherst shows, while also claiming victory at their own two home shows. Overall, the Lyons took home 75 blue ribbons over the five-show span.
The Lyons headed into the holiday break in style as they captured victory at the 2013 Holiday Tournament of Champions. MHC sent two teams to the competition and Team Lyons bested the Centenary Team Blue on the final ride to take the title by two points.
After a fifth-place showing at the Winter Tournament of Champions, MHC dove back into regular season competition with gusto. Following a close runner-up finish at February's UMass Show, the Lyons went on a tear, grabbing wins at their own home show, the co-hosted shot and Regionals.
Mount Holyoke shouldered second-place at the Zone 1 Championships, but the effort was strong enough to qualify them for a bid at Nationals once again. In addition to sending a team, the Lyons also sent four individual riders to this year's event, held at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex.
It was an outstanding effort once again for MHC, which finished seventh overall in the team standings. Individually, senior Felicia Harrsch became the second rider in as many years to capture a National Championship title – earning top honors in the Individual Open Equitation Over Fences.
Academically, the Lyons continued to shine as 17 riders took home IHSA National Academic Honors. Eight of those honorees were named to the First Team, which requires a 3.80 grade point average or higher, while the other nine were Second Team selections – a 3.50 GPA requirement.
• Finished seventh at the IHSA National Championships
• Felicia Harrsch - National Champion in Individual Open Equitation Over Fences
• Won the Region III Championship; Finished second at the Zone I, Region III Championship
•11 student-athletes competed at Nationals; 15 represented at Zones; 19 at Regionals
• Won seven shows during 2013-14 season, including 2nd leg of the Tournament of Champions
• 17 student-athletes earn IHSA National Academic Award – First Team: Elizabeth Brija '16, Flora Fei '17, Felicia Harrsch '14, Claire Herlin '15, Nell Maynard '14, Allee Platanitis '17, Maddi Shortt '15, Flynn Vickowski '14; Second Team: Robin Barson '14, Emily Bessette '15, Callie Calder '15, Colbie Chinowsky '16, Genevieve Couldwell '16, Bridget Finnerty '17, Jess Murray '15, Ella Pittman '14, Maura Zaldonis '15.