In what was a close race throughout, Virginia Intermont and Miami of Ohio ended up
in a tie for high point team at the IHSA tenth anniversary Holiday Tournament of
Champions horse show. Both Miami of Ohio and Virginia Intermont ended up with 33
points in a field of 26 schools. Penn State, led by Lindsey Phoebus (who was the
grand champion rider) placed third with 25 points while Findlay was fourth with 24.
Miami of Ohio has proved to be the most consistant team through the second of
three invitational tournaments thus far, having scored 33 points and reserve at the
pre-season Tournament of Champions show in Storrs, CT on September 21st.
Megan Palmer (first in open flat and fourth in open fences) and Sarah Zichi (first
in intermediate flat) won classes for the red hawks while Lisa Lewis (intermediate
fences), Taylor Helmkamp (novice flat) and Stefanie Fink (walk-trot) all placed
second in their visits to the brand new covered arena at St. Andrews'. Virginia
Intermont benefited most from the blue ribbon, as Kim Hezzelwood (intermediate
fences), Sonnie Ingalls (novice fences), Angee Quattro (open flat) and Jennifer
Parshall (walk-trot) all won classes outright for Eddie Federwischs' team from
Bristol, VA. Parshalls' victory was in the same class that Fink placed second.
Though there were two classes to go at that point, neither Miami of Ohio nor
Virginia Intermont had riders in either one of them, and both red hawk head coach
Jim Arrigon and Federwisch knew they had tied for high point regardless of how the
remaining classes unfolded.
If there is a tie within the top six at an invitational show, the coaches involved
in the tie have a choice to break the tie via a pre-determined tiebreaker class or
let the outcome sit as is. Since this show marked the third time that Miami of
Ohio and Virginia Intermont had tied at one of the tournaments, and because each
had won a tiebreaker once before, both Arrigon and Federwisch opted to leave the
outcome a tie. "We will have the trophy for six months and then they will have
the trophy," said Arrigon, perhaps joking, though the trophy for the winning team
was in Miami of Ohios' possession following the show. There was a tie for fifth
place, however, with Mount Holyoke head coach C.J. Law opting for the tiebreaker
with the University of Maryland. The division which was pre-selected before the
show turned out to be intermediate flat. There are no ride-offs at invitationals,
so the head-to-head results of the earlier class determine who gets the ribbon.
It turned out that Kara Douglas of Maryland had placed second in the class while
Leigh Quarles of Mount Holyoke was fourth (in the same section of intermediate
flat, incidentally). The "Equiterps" as they are known in zone 4, region 1 thus
were officially fifth place, though Mount Holyoke and Maryland both claimed 18
points (one wonders what would have happened if neither Douglas nor Quarles had
placed in intermediate flat. Would the tiebreaker result in a tie??).
FINEST HOUR IN IHSA FOR PHOEBUS
Up until today, the IHSA had been a strange rollercoaster ride for Penn State's
Lindsey Phoebus. A known commodity outside the IHSA when she came to State
College, PA in Fall of 1999, Phoebus suprised some by not winning the Cacchione
Cup out of zone 3, region 3 (Erin O'Neil of Wilson had the honor), though she
did reach the 2000 IHSA Nationals in individual open flat, placing tenth.
Phoebus was not a major factor in 2000-01 for the nittany lions, and did not
ride at any of the shows in 2001-02. Without Phoebus, Penn State finally saw
their streak of nine consecutive region championships snapped by Wilson. Then
opening day 2002 came along, and with it came the return of Lindsey Phoebus.
The senior from Lafayette, NJ won both open classes back on September 22nd.
However since then the rollercoaster turned downward, with teammate Allison
Handler moving ahead narrowly in the race to be high point rider in region 3.
Today Phoebus silenced any critics once and for all, not only for winning the
grand champion class at the end of the day, but more for her effort in winning
the first class of the entire day.
There were 13 riders in each of the undergraduate classes today, with Phoebus in
the first section of open fences. Before the class was even pinned, Federwisch
and St. Andrews' head coach Peggy McElveen were in agreement that "Section A"
featured the finest riding either had seen in an IHSA class - EVER! Jon Conyers,
the longtime head coach at Wesleyan College and now associated with the Findlay
program claimed he would have scored eleven of the thirteen riders in the "80's"
and "90's"! Conyers also judges IHSA shows and was amazed at the quality. One
of those Conyers hopefully would have scored in the 90's was Phoebus, as judge
Mike Rosser found her to be the blue ribbon winner. By winning the section,
Phoebus qualified for the "Grand Champion Rider Challenge" class at the end of
the day, where anyone who won a class, novice or higher, returned. Though some
riders rode both flat and fences today, Phoebus would have the honor of being the
only rider in the first class and the last class (Handler was Penn State's open
flat rider), with firsts in both! Phoebus winning at the beginning of the day
may have sparked the nittany lions, as Alyssa Srock (third in novice fences),
Kara Spengler (second in novice flat) and Nicole Connolly (first in walk-trot)
all helped lift Penn State to 25 points and third place. At the end of the day,
Phoebus edged out Meredith Houx of Texas A & M for the title of Grand Champion
(Houx, a junior from Albuquerque, NM, had won the section of open fences
immediately following Phoebus). All of this was hopefully a nice coming-home
present to nittany lion head coach Malinda Grice, who was a 1993 graduate of
host St. Andrews.
WHAT ARE THE ODDS?
Two seasons ago the University of Findlay captured both high point english and
western team championships at IHSA Nationals. Lori Cramers' oilers seem like a
strong contender to make another go of it in Murfreesboro, at least based on
their performance at St. Andrews (they will have to pull ahead of Otterbein in
their region along the way). Findlay could claim the only other rider besides
Phoebus to win two classes, though for some reason, she wore different numbers
in each! Mara Keith Hunter wore number 750 while winning the novice over
fences, but later wore number 826 in novice flat. What are the odds of two
people named Mara Keith Hunter attending Findlay and ultimatly finding
themselves on the equestrian team and both in the novice division? How about
one to nothing! Hunter was not the only oiler to win a class. Some may recall
Coagi Maten of Findlay winning the exact same team class at the 2001 and 2002
IHSA National shows. Maten has finally pointed out of novice flat, so she will
not be riding in that division within a team competition again. Maten may
wreck havoc on the intermediate flat from now on, as the senior won in that
division at todays' show.
Others to win classes today were Nicole Eula (intermediate fences) and Melissa
Rabbitt (walk-trot-canter) of Mount Holyoke, Rebecca Vanderhoff of St. Andrews
(novice flat) and Jennifer Palmadessa of the University of Connecticut (the
other section of walk-trot-canter). Eula could claim to have won the exact
same division at the pre-season tournament of champions (as could Palmer of
Miami of Ohio and both Hezzelwood and Parshall of Virginia Intermont). Though
she did not win a class today, University of Maryland sophomore Douglas was
second in both intermediate trips and played as big a part as anyone in
bringing the equiterps' up to fifth place overall.
ALUMNI INCLUDE FIRST-TIMERS AND THE SELDOM SEEN
Held between the end of the fences classes and the start of the flat classes
was the "Alumni Medal" class, with all nine entries first jumping, then
flating, then being pinned. Recent Berry College graduate Mary Hughston had
not ridden in any fall zone 5, region 2 shows (or in any other region for
that matter), yet the rules allow her to compete alumni today. Refering to
herself as a "First-timer" in alumni, Hughston was second overall. Andrea
Bill of Mount Holyoke, who was second in both alumni classes at the 2002
IHSA Nationals, was third today. The fifth place winner had placed above
Bill in both of those 2002 Nationals classes. Alison Karkut of St. Lawrence
accompanied her old team to the invitational. Last season Karkut rode alumni
in zone 3, region 1 (all of Long Island, NY and some of Connecticut) and
ultimatly won both classes at Nationals. Karkuts' appearance today was her
first at an IHSA show this season. Kit Adkins of Clemson was fourth between
Bill and Karkut. Two University of Connecticut riders took part, with Sue
Simon placing sixth and Amy Tuckerman out of the ribbons. Two other riders
who did not place deserve a mention, as one of them was a coach today while
the other was feared out of commission for months following a fall on
November 10th. The former would by Trisha Prettyman, at one time a very
successful open rider for the University of Maryland. It turns out that
Emmie Prettyman, mother of Trisha and head coach of the University of
Maryland team, decided that the weekend chores should be split up around
their barn (Clay Hill Stables in Springdale, MD). One of the chores was to
take the Maryland team to the invitational, which Emmie decided Trisha should
do! The latter alumni rider is Maria Triolo, who spent the first year and
a half of her school days at Penn State and the last two and a half at C.W.
Post. Triolo fell and was rolled on during her jumping class at the
Fairfield show on November 10th. It turned out she had not broken anything
after all (Triolo had broken her ankle at an IHSA show 18 months earlier, and
many who saw the fall feared she had broken something on the same leg once
again). Though she did not pin, Triolo, who once had to go first out of 25
riders in a Cacchione Cup class at Nationals, looked just fine. Who won
todays' alumni class? It was Jon Dreyer, the Miami of Ohio graduate who has
already clinched a trip to regionals in both alumni divisions!
LET'S GET LOUD!
Though there was plenty of team spirit, the noise level at todays' show was
quieter than most regular season shows. One team that was not shy to show
support was Rutgers University. The loudest noise of the day was when
freshman Danielle Strangos placed third in the second section of open fences.
Not only was there applause and "Yeas!" but at least one person let out a
scream! "It was probably me," said Strangos herself later in the day. Her
teammate Erica Bello earned a sixth in novice fences, and the same noise was
heard at that time.
IF ALL COACHES HAD AN EJECT BUTTON...
Vanderbilt University was perhaps the only school in attendance that claims
to be without a coach at the moment. "This is our coach, the Sony Handycam,"
said commodore open rider Mawghan McCabe. The team did crowd around the
coach to review what may have gone right or wrong following each class. But
can the handycam steward?
When Miami of Ohio showed at the pre-season tournament of champions, the one
thing that kept them from first place (Cazenovia beat both Miami of Ohio and
Mount Holyoke by six points) was their lack of a walk-trot rider. Following
the invitational, team captain Tess Downing and Arrigon (along with wife
Gwen, son Matt and Matt's girlfriend Stefanie Fink) sat down to discuss how
to fill the walk-trot divison. While everyone threw out ideas about what
kind of rider they needed, Fink, who knew nothing about riding, asked some
questions about the sport that proved she could follow the IHSA structure and
that she had no riding experience whatsoever. Perhaps it was Downing who,
upon hearing that Fink was a freshman at Miami of Ohio, said "C'mon. We're
taking you out riding!" There were a pair of beat-up chaps lying around,
with the word "Slick" on the back that served as Finks' riding apparel
for the initial lessons. And thus was born the legend of "Slick" Stefanie
Fink, second today in walk-trot at the tenth anniversary Holiday Tournament
Show Incidentals: High Temperature in the mid 40's. Sunny skies. Show held in covered arena.
Start time: 9:52AM. Finish: 5:05PM. Judge: Mike Rosser, Southern Pines, North Carolina.
Stewards: Federwisch/Virginia Intermont College, Shirley Murphy/Stonehill College and
Pam Bruemmer/Texas A & M University. This show was Hunter Seat or English only.
Team Totals: Virginia Intermont College (TIE-High Point Team) 33; Miami of Ohio (TIE-High
Point Team) 33; Penn State University 25; University of Findlay 24; University of Maryland 18;
Mount Holyoke College 18; University of Michigan 16; St. Andrews' Presbyterian College 15;
St. Lawrence University 15; University of Connecticut 14; University of Delaware 14; University of
Kentucky 13; Stonehill College 12; Texas A & M University 12; Berry College 11; Cazenovia
College 10; Ohio University 10; University of the South 10; Virginia Tech 10; Purdue University 9;
Fairfield University 6; Vanderbilt University 6; Clemson University 5; Rutgers University 5;
Wake Forest University 4 and University of Wisconsin at Madison 4.
Class-by-class results, in the order in which they were held:
Open equitation over fences - Section A: 1. Lindsey Phoebus, Penn State University.
2. Jessica West, Ohio University. 3. Kate Cronin, Fairfield University. 4. Missy Starr,
Cazenovia College 5. Ashley Myers, University of Kentucky. 6. Erika Jewell, Virginia
Open equitation over fences - Section B: 1. Meredith Houx, Texas A & M University. 2. Dyanna
Rucco, Stonehill College. 3. Danielle Strangos, Rutgers University. 4. Megan Palmer, Miami
University of Ohio. 5. Krista Steinmetz, Purdue University. 6. Mawghan McCabe, Vanderbilt
Intermediate equitation over fences - Section A: 1. Nicole Eula, Mount Holyoke College.
2. Lisa Lewis, Miami University of Ohio. 3. Ingrid Bjornson, University of Kentucky. 4. Thomas
Brennan, Stonehill College. 5. Kristen James, University of Wisconsin at Madision. 6. Racheal
Sharrow, Wake Forest University.
Intermediate equitation over fences - Section B: 1. Kim Hezzelwood, Virginia Intermont College.
2. Kara Douglas, University of Maryland. 3. Jill Callahan, St. Lawrence University. 4. Frank
Bassett, Cazenovia College. 5. Mara Sullivan, Virginia Tech. 6. Diana Davis, Clemson
Novice equitation over fences - Section A: 1. Sonnie Ingalls, Virginia Intermont College.
2. Ann Marie Reubin, Texas A & M University. 3. Alyssa Srock, Penn State University. 4. Alicia
Salo, Virginia Tech. 5. Hally Yandon, University of the South. 6. Erica Bello, Rutgers
Novice equitation over fences - Section B: 1. Mara Keith Hunter, University of Findlay.
2. Katie Leaman, University of Michigan. 3. Megan Bowers, University of Connecticut. 4. Lauren
Cannon, Berry College. 5. Kristin Ricciardone, University of Delaware. 6. Kelly Long, Miami
University of Ohio.
Alumni hunter seat equitation (flat and fences phases combined): 1. Jon Dreyer, Miami
University of Ohio. 2. Mary Hughston, Berry College. 3. Andrea Bill, Mount Holyoke College.
4. Kit Adkins, Clemson University. 5. Alison Karkut, St. Lawrence University. 6. Sue Simon,
University of Connecticut.
Novice equitation on the flat - Section A: 1. Rebecca Vanderhoff, St. Andrews' Presbyterian
College. 2. Kara Spengler, Penn State University. 3. Danielle Graf, Virginia Intermont College.
4. Alannah DiBona, Wake Forest University. 5. Cary Hillier, Berry College. 6. Alison Montoya,
University of Kentucky.
Open equitation on the flat - Section A: 1. Megan Palmer, Miami of Ohio (Black). 2. Kelly
Ross, University of Delaware. 3. Nikki Jeffries, University of Michigan. 4. Christina Walsh,
Purdue University. 5. Ashley Myers, University of Kentucky. 6. Missy Starr, Cazenovia
Walk-trot equitation on the flat - Section A: 1. Nicole Connolly, Penn State University.
2. Lauren Stille, University of Delaware. 3. Jenny Sinclair, University of the South. 4. Angie
Meinhardt, University of Findlay. 5. Lindsey Godby, University of Kentucky. 6. Laura Readick,
Intermediate equitation on the flat - Section A: 1. Sarah Zichi, Miami University of Ohio.
2. Alicia Salo, Virginia Tech. 3. Elizabeth Dotts, University of the South. 4. Lesley Maradik,
Purdue University. 5. Erin Jackson, Penn State University. 6. Jill Marinis, Ohio University.
Walk-trot-canter equitation on the flat - Section A: 1. Jennifer Palmadessa, University of
Connecticut. 2. Kelly Eatman, Berry College. 3. Katie DeLucas, St. Andrews' Presbyterian
College. 4. Kate Bennett, Cazenovia College. 5. Allison Nolting, University of Kentucky.
6. Mary Page Black, Clemson University.
Open equitation on the flat - Section B: 1. Angee Quattro, Virginia Intermont College.
2. Erika Baker, University of Maryland. 3. Mawghan McCabe, Vanderbilt University. 4. Howard
Morrison, St. Andrews' Presbyterian College. 5. Whitney Slausen, St. Lawrence University.
6. Jessica Wilson, Berry College.
Novice Equitation on the flat - Section B: 1. Mara Keith Hunter, University of Findlay.
2. Taylor Helmkamp, Miami University of Ohio. 3. Lynn Hatfield, University of Michigan.
4. Alex Toregas, University of Maryland. 5. Ashley Kinsey, Clemson University. 6. Julie
MacKay, Mount Holyoke College.
Walk-trot equitation on the flat - Section B: 1. Jennifer Parshall, Virginia Intermont
College. 2. Stefanie Fink, Miami University of Ohio. 3. Gina Marie Romanello, Stonehill
College. 4. Jill Connors, University of Connecticut. 5. Michelle Venema, University of
Wisconsin at Madision. 6. Heather Grindell, St. Andrews' Presbyterian College.
Intermediate equitation on the flat - Section B: 1. Coagi Maten, University of Findlay.
2. Kara Douglas, University of Maryland. 3. Tarah Watson, St. Lawrence University. 4. Leigh
Quarles, Mount Holyoke College. 5. Sue Ploski, Fairfield University. 6. Diana Davis, Clemson
Walk-trot-canter equitation on the flat - Section B: 1. Melissa Rabbitt, Mount Holyoke
College. 2. Hallie Britt, St. Lawrence University. 3. Lisa Soukup, Ohio University. 4. Catie
Case, University of Michigan. 5. Leslie Dolivo, University of Delaware. 6. Camie Griffith,
Grand Champion Rider Challenge Class: 1. Lindsey Phoebus, Penn State University.
2. Meredith Houx, Texas A & M University.