Saturday, July 5, 2014
- by B.B. Branton
This is the most sports attention the Lookout Mountain
Catholic Church (Our Lady of the Mount) has had since Chris Brown was a national top 10 junior tennis
player in the early 1960s and Yogi Anderson was earning 12 varsity letters at
the U. of the South (1969-72).
Two thousand meters of open water stood between the Nash
twins and the medal stand as they were poised on the starting line for their
last rowing event of their junior careers.
Not just any finals race, Connor and Quinn Nash of Lookout
Mountain occupied one of six boats in the Men’s Youth Pairs Final at the
USRowing Youth National Championships at Lake Natoma outside Rancho Cordova,
Calif. June 13-15.
Starting out at a steady pace, the 18-year-old Nash twins,rowing under
the Chattanooga Junior Rowing banner, were in fifth place after 500 meters, but
stayed within striking distance of the leaders before making their move the
final 500 and took third and a bronze medal behind champion White Rock and
silver medalist Three Rivers.
“We were really happy to have earned a bronze medal (the
first national medal for a Chattanooga Junior Rowing boat) as we had trained
hard and rowed well in the finals,” said Connor who is 6-foot-5 while Quinn is
6-foot-4 as the brothers took this in the opening heat and then won the repechage
(consolation finals) which earned them a spot in the six-boat championship
A hectic schedule of 6 a.m. practices with coach David Hall,
training at D-I Sports and working as life guards at the Fairyland Club pool
ended with a photo-op on the medal stand and the satisfaction of a job well
“I knew that Connor and Quinn were talented to make the
charge at the end, had put in the time in training for nationals and were
well-prepared,” said coach Hall who is a senior at UTC.
“Everyone who gets to nationals is fast and that Connor and
Quinn had rowed in the quad a couple of years ago at nationals (18th place with
David May and older brother Iain Nash) which gave them invaluable experience
for their pair’s race.”
A well rounded twosome on and off the water, the brothers have
a home-schooled background, plus courses at Chattanooga State (3.5 grade point
average), active at Our Lady of the Mount Catholic Church (Lookout Mtn.), are
life guards at Fairyland Club and swim for the undefeated Fairyland team.
Far from ready to retire their oars, the brothers head to
Gonzaga Univ. (Spokane, Wash.) in August on merit scholarships and will row for
the Zags, a non-scholarship NCAA D-I program.
“We look forward to rowing in college at a Division I program
and Spokane is a great city much like Chattanooga so it’s a perfect fit for
us,” Connor stated.
A perfect fit.
Just as the national bronze medals were around their necks
on a Sunday in June.
contact B.B. Branton at firstname.lastname@example.org