Riding Finishes as Reserve Champion at Home Show

Riding Finishes as Reserve Champion at Home Show

SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. - The Mount Holyoke riding team saw a number of outstanding efforts on Saturday, earning the team Reserve Champion honors at their first home show of the season at the MHC Equestrian Center. The entire event was held outdoors for the nine team competing field.

Captain Bridget Finnerty started our day strong with a beautiful ride to win open fences.  First year Grace Tice was sixth and sophomore Mollie Kowalchik was reserve in the same class.

Mount Holyoke riders swept the two intermediate fences sections with wins by first year Emma Recchi and senior (manager) Laura Von der Porten.  Senior Genevieve Couldwell took fifth in the first section and first year Julia Robinson was second in the second section.

Next, there were four sections of novice fences with ten MHC riders. Sophomores Taryn Isenburg and Mika McKinney, and junior Ellie Demmons each won their section. Junior Sarah Felman was third in the first section, and junior Allee Platanitis was sixth in the second section. 

The third section saw first year Daisy Sears pin third and sophomore Haley Lamoureux pin fourth.  Rounding out the novice fences division, senior Jackie Azelby, junior Cam Carter, and senior Suyin Taunton were sixth, fifth, and third, respectively.

Mount Holyoke alumni and affiliated riders basically filled the alumni divisions.  In fences, former IEA coach Tara Mathews took first and recent alum Ila Addanki took second. In flat, Tara Mathews and Ila Addanki once again took first and second.  MHC alum Kat Kronengold took fifth place, and our strength and conditioning coach Courtney Findeisen took sixth.

Sophomore Cat Lamond kicked off with a first place finish in advanced walk-trot-canter. In the next section, first year Jordan Green and sophomore Morgan Brachfeld placed fifth and sixth, respectively.  Junior Regina Brecha and first year Maggie Stuart were third and fifth, respectively, in their section.

MHC had half of the total rides in open flat. Cam Carter placed second and Julia Robinson placed fifth in the first section.  In the second section, Maddy Skrak, Finnerty, and Tice placed first, third, and fourth respectively.

In the first section of novice flat, Taunton was second and Isenburg was sixth.  Sophomore Emily Holowczak took first place in the second section.

Intermediate flat broke up the five sections of novice flat. Von der Porten and Sears were first and fifth, respectively. In the second section, Couldwell and Platanitis swept first and second.

Returning to novice flat, Demmons was second in the third section. Jackie Azelby won blue in the second section.  Lamoureux and Recchi were second and third, respectively, to wrap up the division.

In walk-trot, sophomore Wendy Ho, senior Stephanie Lewis, and sophomore Katherine Marshall-Kramer each took home fourth in their respective sections.  Junior Katia Kiefaber was sixth in the second section.

Beginner walk-trot-canter wrapped up the regular classes.  First year Sierra Thomas took home a blue ribbon and Emily Tarantini was fourth.

Von der Porten's blues in intermediate flat and fences qualified her for the high point ride off against Westfield State rider Victoria Sullivan.  She drew MHC's horse Ravel and ended up winning high point honors. Couldwell was the reserve intermediate high point rider, besting her competitor in a quiz bowl, while Demmons took home reserve high point honors for the novice division.

In the end, UMass Amherst took top team honors, with Mount Holyoke in reserve. The final standings are below:

The Lyons return to action next weekend at the Amherst Show on Saturday.

Team Results  
Champion High Point College UMass (37)
Reserve Champion Mount Holyoke College (32)
Third Smith College (29)
Fourth Williams College (20)
Fifth Westfield State University (19)
Sixth Springfield College (13)
Seventh Hampshire College (8)
Eighth (Tied) Amherst College and Bennington (5)

Photo courtesy of Carol V. Law.