Ranney Grads to Compete in Top College Sports Programs
The scholar-athlete tradition continues for seven scholar-athletes from the Class of 2012 at Ranney School, who graduated into the following intercollegiate athletic programs this 2011-12 academic year: Harvard University crew (Craig Slater, Tinton Falls), American University spring track and field (Anike Oladeji, Atlantic Highlands), Carnegie Mellon University swimming (Alex Lin, Edison), and Stevens Institute of Technology (Omar Sarhan, Ocean), New York University (Patrick Glodkowski, Parlin), Brandeis University (Thomas Hearne, Holmdel) and Columbia University (Sam Tkach, Little Silver) fencing.
Within the past four years, Ranney School has seen 19 male and female seniors advance to the collegiate level, where they have participated in soccer, tennis, rowing, fencing, lacrosse, swimming, squash and baseball at such institutions as Franklin & Marshall College, Marist College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While the national average of high school students going on to play intercollegiate sports is currently 3.5 percent, as many as 10 percent of Ranney’s seniors pursue athletic endeavors at the college level following high school graduation each year. Many alumni have found success on the fields and in the classrooms of their corresponding college campuses.
Similar to alumnae Kathryn Lowry ’08 and Katherine Rennie ’08, who chose to participate in the sport of crew through such Division I universities as Duke and UNC at Chapel Hill upon their high school graduation, Ranney recent graduate Craig Slater will also continue rowing at the DI collegiate level when he attends Harvard University this upcoming fall. For Craig, success in sculling first began when Ranney developed its varsity crew program in the spring of 2009. Since then, he has garnered both national and international recognition out on the water. “Ranney opened many opportunities, scholastically and athletically, that I would have never had at any other school,” said Craig.
Aside from securing a Triple Crown of Scholastic Rowing and Ranney’s second national rowing title following a first place finish at the 2012 National Scholastic Rowing Association of America (SRAA) Regatta this May, Craig was also one of only three high school seniors chosen to represent the United States at the Junior World Rowing Championships in Eton, Great Britain last August. Overall, Craig has become quite a star in the junior rowing world, and even broke two ultra-distance world records — the Tandem Longest Continual Row record and Tandem 24-Hour record.
Following in the footsteps of fencing predecessor Steven Jow ’09, four fencers will once again take to the strip when they participate in various intercollegiate athletic programs this 2012-13 winter season as well. Throughout their varsity careers, two of these fencers in particular — Sam Tkach and Omar Sarhan — were instrumental in not only securing two District Championships, but one State Squad Championship as well. Along with veteran fencer Thomas Florek ’11, Sam and Omar earned a gold medal both at the NJSIAA/Bollinger District Championships and Squad State Championships held in January and February, 2011. Keeping this tradition of excellence alive, Sam and his teammates, Thomas Hearne and Christopher Farkouh ’14, also secured the Epee squad’s second consecutive District Championship title in 2012.
Notable Ranney scholar-athlete alumni include Wes Powell ’08 who continued on to the United States Naval Academy and began his Division I athletic soccer career with the Midshipmen as a college freshman in 2008; while there he earned a place on the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll and helped lead the team to the Patriot League Tournament; he recently graduated with a degree in applied mathematics. Ranney alumna and Richard Stockton College of New Jersey women’s tennis player Laura Church ’10 leaves one important piece of advice to students considering collegiate athletics: “Participate in a college sport. It could be one of the most rewarding experiences of your college career.”