SHELBURNE FALLS, Mass. - The Mount Holyoke riding team was back in action on Saturday, braving the cold at the Amherst Show, hosted at Biscuit Hill Farm. The Lyons garnered high point college honors once again for the third straight show.
The day kicked-off with a large open fences class, which saw three great rides come from senior Mollie Kowalchik, sophomore Franny Eremeeva, and senior Maddy Skrak to secure first, third, and fifth place finishes, respectively.
Another large class of intermediate over fences followed with additional stellar riding from seniors Anna Rzchowski, Emily Holowczak, and Taryn Isenburg, as well as junior Lily DeBenedictis. Rzchowski and Holowczak wrapped up the class with second and fourth place finishes, respectively, while Isenburg and DeBenedictis had nice rides, unfortunately finishing out of the ribbons.
Two sections of novice fences entered the ring next, the first of which saw a beautiful trip from sophomore Emy McLaughlin for second place. In the second section, sophomore Harriet Thomson and senior Avery Hanlon delivered outstanding rounds to secure second and fifth place finishes, respectively.
Lyons assistant coach and UCONN alum Tara Mathews finished the jumping portion of the day with a beautiful ride in alumni over fences to secure first place. She returned to the ring shortly after to kick off the flat portion of the day, where an equally beautiful ride secured her another first place finish.
Advanced walk trot canter entered the ring next in two sections. The first section saw a nice ride from first year Lou Jefwa, who secured fourth place. In the second section, sophomore Abby Watkins delivered a beautiful ride for a first place finish. One section of beginner walk trot canter wrapped up the division, and it saw two great rides from first years Nora Cyra and Carol Law, to finish first and fourth, respectively.
Several riders returned to the ring in the next division, novice flat. The first section saw Hanlon and Thomson return to the ring with nice rides to post third and fourth, respectively. The second section saw a lovely ride from McLaughlin for another second place finish. In the final section, sophomores Indra Rapinchuk-Souccar and Katerina Alvarez had lovely rides to finish one-two.
Isenburg returned to the ring next to kick off the intermediate flat division. She had a nice ride in the first section for a fifth place finish. In the second section, Rzchowski returned to the ring with fellow senior Sabrina Fox, and both delivered lovely rides to finish first and fifth, respectively.
MHC moved next to open flat, where Kowalchik returned to the ring in the first section with a solid ride for second place. The second section saw Eremeeva and Skrak return to the ring with beautiful rides to finish first and fifth, respectively.
At the end of the day, Kowalchik and Rzchowski were called back to the ring with an additional rider for a ride off for high point rider. After a series of tests, Kowalchik was named overall high point rider and Rzchowski was named overall reserve high point rider in addition to earning high point intermediate rider. McLaughlin was also named high point novice rider.
Congratulations were in order for Cyra, who qualified out of beginner and into advanced walk trot canter with her ride today.
Mount Holyoke finished the day with 42 points to be named high point college. UMass followed with 33 points to be named reserve high point college.
Mount Holyoke- 42 points
UMass Amherst- 33
Smith College- 28
Westfield State University- 22
Bennington College- 10
Hampshire College- 10
Amherst College- 6
The Lyons return to action next weekend, wrapping up the fall season at home on Saturday at the MHC Equestrian Center. Action begins at 9am.