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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The Battalion May 4, 2024

Texas A&M crew faces new challenges with canceled season

The+fall+season+for+Texas+A%26amp%3BMs+crew+club+team+has+been+canceled.
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The fall season for Texas A&M’s crew club team has been canceled.

Members of Texas A&M crew have regularly competed in rowing competitions all over the state and the country since 2001 and enjoyed great success, racking up hundreds of medals in many events over the last two decades.
This school year poses a different competition, however, with the team’s fall season being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which had already put an abrupt stop to their spring season.
Dylan Halbeisen, a member of the open men’s squad, said he was heartbroken but not surprised when word came that all competitions this fall were canceled.
“I wasn’t really surprised by any means,” Halbeisen said. “In a world in which we have to socially distance six feet from other people, with being in a boat about half a foot from each other, it seemed like the season was going to come to an end.”
But the team, led by head coach Nate Baker and president Sarah McQuaid, already has plans to improve physically and grow as a team while being safe and social distancing.
“One of our options is to do Zoom virtual workouts,” Baker said. “We’re also planning to go to local parks to do cardio or body-weight circuit exercises in small groups. That way we can still maintain social distancing and fulfill all those requirements.”
Baker, an ocean engineering junior and third-year member of the team, said his unique role as a student-head coach will have to be done a little differently given the circumstances.
“My role will be the same, but how I go about completing that role will be different,” Baker said. “My first goal is always to have a safe, healthy rowing environment where everyone can learn to love the sport, make new friends and get in good shape.”
According to McQuaid, they also have ideas for building relationships between teammates, such as Zoom breakout rooms to help everyone get to know each other a little better.
“You make a lot of friends and friendships that follow you outside of practice and competition,” McQuaid said. “We’ll have a few social events on Zoom. During recruitment we usually have an ice cream social where everyone can come to one place and get to talk and get to know one another.”
Halbeisen said the important thing to accomplish during these virtual meetings is encouraging everyone to connect with the true meaning of the sport which would otherwise be easier to feel on the water with the rest of the team.
“We have to find a way to get all the people together to try and find that common denominator which is the spirit of rowing,” Halbeisen said.
One reason there is such an emphasis on building team relationships could be because crew is completely student-run from the top to the bottom, said Baker.
“One thing that makes us different is that all of our athletes, coaches and leadership team are all students,” Baker said. “I’ve always been impressed by the diligence and the motivation from our leadership team because not only are we all students struggling through classes, we’re also a competitive rowing crew.”

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