July 17, 2012
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -
Navy heavyweight rowing senior Alexander Kornick (Akron, Ohio) took home a silver medal as part of the U.S. men's four with coxswain crew at the World Rowing Under 23 Championships this past weekend in Trakai, Lithuania. Fellow senior Ted Baumgardner (Longport, N.J.) narrowly missed out on a coming home with a medal as his four without coxswain boat finished fourth at the event.
"It was a great opportunity and an honor to represent the United States," said Kornick. "It was a little unexpected, but we put together a great boat during training camp and gained a lot of speed pretty quickly."
Kornick, who was joined by Seamus Labrum (Cape May Court House, N.J./Washington), Max Mannisto (Belmont, Calif./Washington), Patrick Marre (Portland, Ore./Washington) and Garrett Rinden (Costa Mesa, Calif./Washington), finished just behind defending champion Serbia in the finals. The U.S. crew grabbed the lead in the second 500 meters of the race before Serbia caught up at the midway point. The two crews stayed close until the final 300 meters where Serbia began to creep ahead. Serbia finished with a time of 6:34.13 and the U.S. clocked a 6:35.42.
"It was nerve wracking and exhilarating at the same time," said Kornick. "We kept within our boat and it turned into a dual between us and Serbia by the end. It was a good race, we have no regrets and we left it all out there."
Baumgardner and the four without coxswain crew were overtaken by Great Britain in the final 300 meters of its finals race to just miss out on a medal spot. Justin Jones (Bellmawr, N.J./Northeastern), Will Gillis (Seattle, Wash./Princeton) and Alex Karwoski (Hollis, N.H./Cornell) joined Baumgardner in the boat.
"It was definitely an exciting and competitive process from the time we started camp in Seattle to our final race in Lithuania," said Baumgardner, who just returned to the U.S. late Monday night along with Kornick. "It was a humbling experience to see so many great competitors. When you put on the jersey, you're representing the United States and it puts a lot in perspective."
After competing at a high level on the international stage, both Baumgardner and Kornick are eager to return to Annapolis later this summer and begin preparations for the up coming season.
"I'm extremely excited to come back this fall," said Kornick. "I think that we, along with Will Race last year, were able to show that rowers from the Naval Academy can be just as competitive as guys from other universities. We want to bring the momentum that we picked up over the past month back to the Naval Academy this fall."