Kaira Lay and Ava Underahl row at the head of the Charles River in Boston. (Photo courtesy of Brooke Tinch.)

Two high school students with the White Rock Rowing Club signed letters of intent to row at the collegiate level.

Kaira Lay signed with Division I University of West Virginia after officially visiting seven other campuses. The home-school student is joining a team that placed last in the Big 12 at the 2018 conference championship behind first-place Texas, second-place Oklahoma, third-place Kansas State and fourth-place Kansas.

Ava Underahl signed with Stetson University, a private school in DeLand, Florida. The program had its best finish at the Mid‐Atlantic Athletic Conference championship last year when it tied for seventh place.

Although the Allen High School student started rowing after suffering a golf injury, the sport has provided her with a host of new experiences, she said.

“Without rowing, I would have never found my dream school, met some amazing people or rowed at the Head of the Charles Regatta in Boston,” Underahl said in a statement. “Crew has made a huge, positive impact on my life, and I can proudly say that it has made me a harder worker, a sharper thinker and a deeper sleeper.”

The 17 year olds are members of the White Rock Rowing Club, which helps train and develop young rowers.

“Our athletes work hard and dedicate themselves to this sport,” said Sue Ellen Chambers, president of White Rock Boathouse. “At White Rock Rowing, we fully support the passion of our athletes.”


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